Pittsburgh, and Portland, Maine, recently enacted building energy-use benchmarking laws—making the number of local U.S. jurisdictions that require some form of annual reporting of building energy use total 19. Though data is just beginning to trickle in, recent studies indicate that the disclosure policies themselves may be spurring energy conservation in public and private buildings.
“A lot of U.S. cities are taking a leadership role, responding to the threats of climate change and making commitments to reduce carbon emissions,” says Zachary Hart, manager of building performance policy at the Institute for Market Transformation, a nonprofit devoted to cutting building energy consumption. “Energy benchmarking is one piece of the pie,” he adds.
Because it can moderate the damaging effects of earthquakes, base-isolation is a technique used primarily in seismically active regions. ENR takes a look at some of the largest applications of base-isolation technologies in the world.