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GSA Evaluates Sage, Cypress, Daintree Green Tech

The US General Services Administration has selected products from Sage Electrochromics, Cypress Envirosystems and Daintree Networks for its Green Proving Ground program that evaluates sustainable building technologies.

Green Proving Ground uses GSA-managed properties to evaluate technologies that reduce energy in federal buildings and have significant savings potential if widely implemented.

One of these selected technologies is Sage Electrochromics’s SageGlass (pictured), electronically tintable glass that maximizes daylight and outdoor views in buildings while controlling solar glare and heat gain. SageGlass can reduce a building’s cooling load by 20 percent and HVAC requirements up to 30 percent, according to the company.

GSA will evaluate SageGlass at the Donna-Rio Bravo US Land Port of Entry, a Green Proving Ground project and the first LEED Gold-accredited port of entry in Texas. The building is the checkpoint and inspection facility for civilian traffic crossing the Rio Grande into and from Mexico via the Alliance International Bridge.

A DOE report published last year highlighted SageGlass as one energy efficient building technology that has emerged from the Emerging Technologies initiative within the department’s Better Technologies program.

GSA has also selected Cypress’ Wireless Pneumatic Thermostat, designed to be a cost-effective way to transition from pneumatic to digital thermostat controls. The product reduces energy use by 18 to 30 percent, according to the company.

GSA will use the WPT to retrofit about 100,000 square feet of office space in the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C., the second largest federal office building after the Pentagon.

This summer, GSA listed Cypress products on its Federal Supply Schedule, giving the company streamlined access to GSA’s building portfolios without the need for time-consuming bid processes or contract negotiations.

Daintree will participate in two Green Proving Ground energy-saving lighting projects. Lighting is the largest electrical load for the GSA portfolio and accounts for 30 percent of the total energy consumed by GSA office buildings, according to the agency.

It will use Daintree’s ControlScope wireless control system in two GPG office-building trials in California. In a Sacramento trial, ControlScope will be used to control existing fluorescent lighting. In a San Francisco trial, ControlScope will be used in conjunction with new LED fixtures. Daintree says GSA has established a baseline, and DOE will monitor metered energy usage. GSA will publish results from the trials in early 2014.

GSA works with the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory to conduct these tests. The technologies are selected for their potential to help reduce operating costs and meet the sustainability goals in President Obama’s Executive Order on environmental, energy and economic performance.

The order, signed in October 2009, set targets including cutting facility energy intensity by 30 percent by 2015, from a 2003 baseline; ensuring that at least five percent of agency electricity comes from renewable sources, with at least half that from post-1999 sources; and reducing potable water intensity by at least 26 percent by 2020, compared to a 2007 baseline.

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