Our designers are looking to optimize building efficiency and then incorporate renewable energy technologies, leading to the creation of zero-energy buildings. Changes in existing buildings can also be made to reduce energy usage and costs. These may include small steps, such as choosing LED light bulbs and energy efficient appliances, or larger efforts such as upgrading insulation and weatherization.

Combined heat and power systems capture the “waste” heat from power plants and use it to provide heating, cooling, and/or hot water to nearby buildings and facilities. This increases the energy efficiency of power generation from approximately 33 percent to up to 80 percent. The smart grid is another system that will improve the efficiency of electric generation, distribution, and consumption.