THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 13


The most frequent phrases and
terms that come to mind about net
zero are efficient, modern/new/
innovative and environmentally
friendly. Interestingly enough, the study
did show some real world negative
sentiment, such as the perception that
net zero is costly and expensive.
Design Consideration - Costs, Tools
and Energy Performance Analysis
It isn't surprising to know that
basically all commercial architects
include primary energy or source
energy in the decision-making process
when designing the HVAC systems of
a building. However, a few interesting
aspects appeared related to analysis and
design:
n	
When it comes to analyzing energy
performance, the audience is split
nearly in half with 47 percent saying
they design according to prescriptive
energy codes, and 51 percent saying
they design using building software
and voluntary programs;
n	
In relation to design, 53 percent
say that long-term energy costs
are the most important factor, and
47 percent say that initial upfront
equipment and installation costs are
also important;
n	
Also related to design, 57 percent say
that carbon emission is important,
while 47 percent say that operating
costs are important; and,
n	
When measuring the efficiency of
building appliances, 40 percent
report site-based methods, while
55 percent report source-based
methods.

friendly, low emissions, safety, innovation
and meaningful impact.
In conclusion, technological
advancements are going to influence
and change how net zero affects the
commercial building space, and costs
will come down and processes will
improve. How natural gas positions itself
in that future realm is a true unknown.
Advocates are out there. Natural gas
is a solution that fits and works well.
How natural gas will play in the net zero
world will be revealed more in the near
future.

Energy Source Preference -
Building Design
At the conclusion of the survey,
we wanted to understand how
commercial architects view energy
sources in general. We provided a
battery of characteristics and asked
each respondent to select the one
energy source that best matches when
considering a building design. The
graphic below highlights where each
unique energy source has a perceived
advantage or shares the advantage with
another energy source.
Natural gas led or tied with other
energy sources for cost efficiency,
comfortability, meaningful impact,
accessibility and easy implementation.
Solar led or tied with other energy
sources related to environmentally

Rich Groom is the Chief Executive Officer
and Principal at Sparks Research. To find
out more about him or the company, visit
www.sparksresearch.com or call
864-654-7571 x222.

NATURAL GAS

COST EFFICIENCY & COMFORT most identified with
Natural Gas
considering
building most
design. identified w
COSTwhen
EFFICENCY
& COMFORT
Natural Gas when considering building desig

Cost e cien t
Comfortable

Meaningful
Impact

SOLAR

Environmentally
friendly
Low emissions
Safest
Innovation

Accessible
Easy-toImplement

ELECTRIC

Energy Source Characteristics Considering in Design

Energy Source Characteristics Considering in Design

"Architects have a significant impact on energy applications designed into new buildings. According
to the Sparks survey, there remains a favorable leaning toward natural gas applications among the
architectural community. That being noted, there is a growing sentiment of eliminating fossil fuels
in building design making it incumbent upon the natural gas industry to demonstrate how gas
applications fit into zero energy design. The importance of the 2015 Department of Energy zero
energy definitions being based on source energy and the industry's work in the codes and standards
arena are critical for success. Additionally, with the advancements in combined heating and power
and distributed generation technologies, and the trend of electric generation moving closer to the
customer, the natural gas industry has a great opportunity with architects," said Rodney Dill from the
Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia.

THE SOURCE | WINTER 2016, VOL. 9, ISSUE 2 13


http://www.sparksresearch.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of THE SOURCE - Winter 2016

First Person
APGA Events
Industry Update: Furnace Rule Report
The Future of Natural Gas in Zero Energy Building Design
Bringing Success to Succession in the Utility World
Taking a Fresh Look at Distributed Generation and CHP
Why Energy Codes Matter and How They Impact Your Utility
Environmental Group and Utility Work Together
Legislative Outlook
The Pipeline
Marketing Matters
At Last
Advertisers’ Index/ Advertiser.com
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - bellyband1
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - bellyband2
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - cover1
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - cover2
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 3
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 4
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 5
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 6
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - First Person
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - APGA Events
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 9
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Industry Update: Furnace Rule Report
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - The Future of Natural Gas in Zero Energy Building Design
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 12
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 13
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Bringing Success to Succession in the Utility World
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 15
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Taking a Fresh Look at Distributed Generation and CHP
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 17
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 18
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 19
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Why Energy Codes Matter and How They Impact Your Utility
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 21
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Environmental Group and Utility Work Together
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 23
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Legislative Outlook
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 25
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - The Pipeline
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Marketing Matters
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 28
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 29
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - 30
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - Advertisers’ Index/ Advertiser.com
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - cover4
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - outsert1
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - outsert2
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - outsert3
THE SOURCE - Winter 2016 - outsert4
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