Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Energy Efficiency Workforce Development for Building Operations Professionals

BOMA San Francisco Members:

The U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Commerce have announced selections for three Centers for Building Operations Excellence that will receive a total of $1.3 million to create and deploy programs aimed at training current and incoming building operators. The Centers are part of the Obama Administration's Better Buildings Initiative, which is working to improve the energy efficiency of America's commercial buildings 20% by 2020 with the potential to reduce American business' energy bills by approximately $40 billion per year.

The three Centers for Building Operations Excellence will work with universities, local community and technical colleges, trade associations, and the Energy Department's national laboratories to build training programs that provide commercial building professionals with the critical skills they need to optimize building efficiency while reducing energy waste and saving money. The Department of Energy and Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technologies' Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP) are jointly funding the Centers.

The Centers for Building Operations Excellence, chosen through a competitive grants process, utilize multi-organization partnerships and support from local and state governments.

The selected Centers are:
  • The Corporation for Manufacturing Excellence in California, partnering with Laney College and the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 39.
  • Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center in Pennsylvania, partnering with Pennsylvania State University, Pennsylvania College of Technology, and Drexel University.
  • New York State Department of Economic Development in New York, partnering with City University of New York and Rochester Institute of Technology.
The Better Buildings Initiative program creates opportunities for current and future facilities staff of all levels to obtain valuable skills that support a clean energy economy. Specifically, the funding announced today will help the three Centers develop curricula and pilot training programs for building operators, managers and energy service providers, focusing on building re-tuning, energy management, and building operations in commercial, industrial, and educational buildings. The training will outline steps building operators can take to reduce energy consumption, save money and drive continuous improvement in a broad range of commercial buildings.

Learn more about the Better Buildings Initiative. To learn more about NIST MEP's work to support manufacturers nationwide, visit the NIST website.

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