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The 'social building:' using social media to save energy

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By: SGN Staff

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By Conway Irwin

 

Smart Meters are amassing reams of data that, when effectively analyzed and applied, can help energy consumers at all levels – residential, commercial and industrial – cut down on both their consumption and their bills. And social media, backed by strong analytics, may prove to be an effective tool for delivering efficiency improvements.

 

Using the Data

Managers of large buildings, campuses or other facilities can significantly reduce operating costs by cutting down on their energy consumption. While Smart Meters are now providing data that can allow consumers to pinpoint prime targets for energy efficiency measures, making sense of all that data is not as simple as collecting it, which could pose an obstacle to consumers’ ability to use it effectively.

 

“A massive amount of data has become really accessible, for the first time, to us,” said Paul Bardon, Honeywell Building Solutions Vice-President of Global Marketing, at the Honeywell Users Group (HUG) conference in Phoenix, Arizona this week. “How do you use this data to actually either make a building more efficient or make the operators more effective so they can make the building more efficient?”

“Managing that information and that data is the next big frontier for this industry,” Bardon said.

 

The Social Building

HBS plans to bring social networking products to market in the next 12-18 months to help manage that information flow and deliver it in a way that enhances both the speed and efficiency of identifying and responding to opportunities for on-site energy efficiency improvements.

 

HBS’ solutions seek to transform a “smart” building into a “social” one – one that provides real-time, accessible information on operational performance. The idea of Facebook-style status updates from a building or an energy-intensive piece of equipment might raise some eyebrows. But it also may represent a practical means of helping facilities to manage their energy consumption.

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