Covid-19 has presented a number of obstacles in regaining normalcy and access to the majority of our built infrastructure. As a result, sustainable building certifications have adapted to address the health and safety concerns associated with a post-pandemic environment. In particular, International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) has recently released a new WELL rating system to prioritize health and safety in a COVID-19 world – WELL Health-Safety Rating
The proverb “Hindsight is 20/20” brings new meaning in the year 2020 as we look back at the COVID-19 pandemic and as we transition into 2021. The Stone House Group was no exception in terms of the adversity we faced particularly in our involvement with healthcare institutions.
How an FCA laid the foundation for Energy Savings and a Network of System Performance
Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, an all-girls independent school located in Princeton, New Jersey, recently released an article published within NBOA’s NetAssets magazine that discusses the School’s path to a fully integrated, connected campus through a sophisticated building management system, powered by the Internet of Things (IoT). You can read the full article here.
The Stone House Group is partnering with Lehigh University and Trust to develop Lehigh’s Climate Action Strategy. Our team will conduct an ASHRAE Level 1.5 Energy Audit of thirty-four (34) campus facilities and provide technical consulting services through the Climate Action Planning process. Trust will engage with the campus community to support Plan development. The Climate Action Plan will outline strategies and tactics that provide potential paths for the University to achieve net carbon neutrality. Carbon reduction targets will be developed in conjunction with campus working and advisory groups. The Stone House Group’s staff will work with students in Lehigh’s Industrial Assessment Center to complete campus energy audits, providing an opportunity to make the campus a living laboratory.
At this point in the COVID-19 pandemic, energy and facilities engineers are familiar with ASHRAE's guidelines for mitigating the risk of infection spread. These can be broken down as filtration, mitigation, and dilution. Dilution, or adding additional fresh air, is the best "bang for the buck", especially in facilities that feature a modern Building Automation System. There are a few different sequences of operation that can be implemented by your BAS contractor to dilute the air of recycled air in your facility.
The US Green Building Council remains at the helm as a model of good practices, earlier this year releasing four pilot credits to target the spread of infectious disease. Collectively named the Safety First Pilot Credits, these credits could be pursued by projects pursuing LEED certification or used as a guideline for all others:
Fall has arrived, and along with it, more temperate weather across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. The shoulder season, as we call it in facilities operations, exists between peak cooling season (late May through mid-September) and peak heating season (mid-October through March). With decreased demand for cooling, and only mild heating demand, the forthcoming weeks bring an opportunity to curb energy consumption by taking advantage of favorable outside air temperatures.
Eighteen organizations, comprising of businesses, colleges, and universities, have signed a letter to the Pennsylvania general assembly urging lawmakers to support policies that combat climate change, including investing in renewable energy and pollution reduction measures.
We are proud to announce that our very own Alex Popp is officially certified as a TRUE (Total Resource Use and Efficiency) Advisor! TRUE Certified facilities set a high bar for sustainability and sustainable practices. TRUE does not focus on the amount of materials diverted from landfills, but emphasizes the importance of upstream policies and practices that make true zero waste possible.