The measure can be claimed if a contract has been signed for the procurement of new off-site renewable energy that is specifically allocated to the building project. Renewable energy includes any carbon-free energy that is generated without the use of fossil fuels, such as that sourced from solar, wind, tidal, or biomass resources. This measure does not impact operational CO2 savings, but it reduces the total carbon footprint of the project. This measure can be claimed for a Zero Net Carbon certification only once the project has achieved 40% or greater savings in Energy.
Investment in off-site renewable energy supports the creation of new clean energy resources on the electrical grid. This allows projects to access renewable energy even if they are located in a dense urban environment and do not have sufficient open space or solar access to generate energy on site. Supporting off-site renewable energy can accelerate the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions associated with the energy sector. Additionally, by increasing renewable energy capacity on the grid, these resources may become more accessible or affordable for a greater number of electricity consumers.
In order to claim this measure, the design team must specify the quantity of off-site renewable energy that was contractually procured for the building project. If an entity associated with the project has already made general procurements of off-site renewable energy at an organization level, it must be demonstrated that a specific allocation was made for the exclusive use of the building. Off-site renewable energy procurements are typically transacted in blocks of energy units over the course of a year, such as kilowatt hours or equivalent BTU of electricity. When off-site renewable energy procurements are entered into the EDGE app, the quantity is compared to the annual electricity use to give a percentage offset.
Off-site renewable energy may be procured from a variety of sources that are typically regionally dependent. In some countries, utility providers have established formal programs to support renewable energy development through a premium rate that is charged directly to the consumer’s electricity bill, known as “green power” purchasing. Alternatively, third-party providers may have established individual projects or other community-based cooperatives to allow collective procurement of renewable energy at the local level. Where regional renewable energy resources do not exist, projects may also consider procurement of renewable energy certificates (RECs) or other transferrable credits that can be sourced from a broader range of locations. These credits essentially transfer the value of renewable energy generated from the system owner to a consumer on the open market.
Project teams should refer to their local jurisdiction or regulatory authority for a definition of acceptable forms of renewable energy. In general, the EDGE tool will not accept forms of renewable energy that involve the combustion of fossil fuels or other non-renewable carbon-based resources.
Relationship to Other Measures
Off-site renewable energy procurements may be made in combination with other measures that reduce the use of fossil fuel or carbon-based energy resources for building construction and operations. These may include energy efficiency measures that improve the passive performance of a building, such as increased insulation or higher efficiency glass; the reduction of fossil fuel energy use in active systems, such as through high efficiency equipment; or the replacement of fossil-fuel based electricity from the grid with on-site generated renewable energy. The ultimate goal of combining these energy use reduction and replacement measures would be to utilize renewable energy for all energy demands on site.
The base case assumes that no off-site renewable energy procurements have been made for the project.
The design team must be able to provide documentation of the origin and type of off-site renewable energy procurements, including the name of the provider. This documentation should include a copy of a signed contract or other formal agreement to confirm allocation of the of the off-site renewable energy.
Note: Off-site renewable energy procurements must be associated with new projects that are retired from the market after the energy is procured.
|Design Stage||Post-Construction Stage|
|No documentation is required at the design stage.||
At the post-construction stage, the following must be used to demonstrate compliance:
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