Regional Vulnerabilities Caused by Climate Change
➙How stable is your region’s energy infrastructure against
climate change? A DOE report
examines the projected weaknesses and
the impact of more frequent and extreme
weather events on energy security.
Region-specific concerns range from
more severe droughts and wildfires to
more powerful hurricanes and record
heat waves. Everything from oil operations, fuel transportation, hydropower
generation, grid infrastructure and bio-energy crops are facing disruption.
Learn how your area’s departure from
historical averages could significantly
impede energy system performance and
expose your facility to power quality
Northwest: Hydropower provides
more than 70% of electricity. Warmer
temperatures and less mountain snowpack will shift peak streamflow, increasing electricity demand for cooling in the
summer when available hydropower
generation is reduced.
Southwest: System reliability is increasingly threatened by higher temperatures, declining water availability and
greater risk of wildfire.
Great Plains: The northern states
produce several key energy sources,
Gulf Coast are facing increased intensity
for hurricanes and rising sea levels, all of
which can damage energy infrastructure.
Midwest: More than 90% of electricity is generated by coal-fired and other
thermoelectric power plants. These are
vulnerable to increasing temperatures,
which reduce the generation and transmission capacity of power plants and
lines while simultaneously increasing
electricity demand for cooling.
Northeast: While this area is historically cool, increased electricity demand
for cooling is expected as temperatures
climb. Sea level rise and storm surges
threaten coastal energy infrastructure
while inland infrastructure (roads,
railroads, refineries and power lines) is
vulnerable to more frequent flooding.
Southeast: A large portion of the
energy infrastructure is located in lowlying coastal plains that are susceptible
to flooding. High winds, coastal erosion
and large waves from hurricanes and
sea level rise can jeopardize oil and gas
production, ports, pipelines, refineries
and storage facilities, as well as electricity generation and transmission.
The full report, which also includes information on Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto
Rico, is entitled Climate Change and the
U. S. Energy Sector: Regional Vulnerabilities and Resilience Solutions. Download at
WARMER TEMPERATURES, greater risks of
wildfires, declining water availability and heavier
precipitation are disrupting power reliability
across the U.S.
A Common Language for Building Energy Performance
➙The amount of building performance data has grown
exponentially over the past few
years thanks to increased demand for
information on resource consumption
and public policies encouraging trans-
However, different data repositories
frequently use a variety of terms, definitions and formats, making it tough to
compare subsets of facilities across various jurisdictions and building technologies. A new “dictionary of data” developed by the DOE and the Lawrence
Berkeley National Laboratory is aimed
at changing that.
The Building Energy Data Exchange
Specification, or BEDES (pronounced
“beads”), contains a standardized set of
common energy terms and definitions.
When two differing data repositories
map their data to the BEDES specification, they can speak the same language,
allowing users to more easily compare or
exchange information between the two.
“As more applications adopt BEDES,
more bridges are created, increasing the
number of market actors able to share
and exchange data with relatively low
transaction costs,” the DOE noted in a
statement. “The end result is clear: with
more bridges in the mix, new opportuni-
ties open up for big data solutions to be
examined and pursued, increasing both
the amount and richness of information
available to support decision making.”
The DOE’s Building Performance Da-
tabase and Standard Energy Efficiency
Data Platform are both compliant with
the specification already, making it easi-
er for facilities professionals to compare
data between them. ENERGY STAR’s
Portfolio Manager and the Building
Performance Institute’s Home Perfor-
mance XML standard have also mapped
to BEDES’ terms and definitions.
Several other large databases, including the New York Power Authority, the
DOE’s Building Energy Asset Score, and
ASHRAE’s SPC 211, are in the process of
establishing compliance. B