Establishing a commercial building energy data framework for India: Approaches, use cases, and institutions
Buildings account for over 40% of the world's energy consumption and are therefore a key contributor to a country's energy as well as carbon budget. Understanding how buildings use energy is critical to understanding how related policies may impact energy use. Data enables decision making, and good quality data arms consumers with the tools to compare their energy performance to their peers, allowing them to differentiate their buildings in the real estate market on the basis of their energy footprint. Good quality data are also essential for policy makers to prioritize their energy saving strategies and track implementation. The United States' Commercial Building Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS) is an example of a successful data framework that is highly useful for governmental and nongovernmental initiatives related to benchmarking energy forecasting, rating systems and metrics, and more. The Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) in India developed the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) and launched the Star Labeling program for a few energy-intensive building segments as a significant first step. However, a data driven policy framework for systematically targeting energy efficiency in both new construction and existing buildings has largely been missing. There is no quantifiable mechanism currently in place to track the impact of code adoption through regular reporting/survey of energy consumption in the commercial building stock. In this paper we present findings from our study that explored use cases and approaches for establishing a commercial buildings data framework for India.