Winter 2016 Forum    

"Leading the Market: A Look at Energy Efficiency in a Constantly Evolving Market"

December 9, 2016

Leftbank Annex, Suite 012, 101 N. Weidler
(Suite 012 Entry of Wheeler Ave)
Portland, Oregon

As always, the latest APEM Forum provided a wealth of resource material, presented by local experts, geared toward helping members reduce energy use and improve cost margins in their facilities.  Here is a snippet of what was discussed…

Charlie Grist, Manager, NW Power and Conservation Council.
Charlie explained why energy efficiency is so necessary: beyond new technology or being “green,” conservation was a necessary reaction to the supply overbuild seen in the Pacific Northwest decades ago; now efficiency is itself considered a resource.  From a resource standpoint (regionally), EE is cheaper for consumers, and acts as insurance against the wrong kinds of load growth or supply growth.  Once efficiency (again, regionally) was a proven resource, its use evolved into many of the conservation programs we see today. 

With regional load expected to grow 5,000MW over the next 20 years, the NWP&CC has introduced its 7th Power Plan—which includes conservation, efficiency, and renewables—to meet capacity. 

So, how does this affect us?  It’s no surprise that the balance of commercial and industrial power consumption is from lighting loads, HVAC loads, and computer/server loads.  The 7th Plan involves measures whose technology and controls help curtail this consumption.  As one responsible for the performance of our facilities, we can implement these suggested measures to improve our building’s performance.  Visit their Website for specific information.

What’s in the future – expanded demand response strategies, and the Internet of Things.**  (** See the APEM Spring Forum!!)

Larry Blaufus, Sr Mgr Large Customers, Clark PUD
Larry began his presentation with information specific to Clark PUD, describing what makes a Public Utility District different from other types of utilities, and what makes Clark unique.  He then touched on Clark’s adoption of the NW Power and Conservation Council’s 7th Plan, demonstrating that conservation/efficiency is the most accessible resource.  What’s missing now (which Charlie also mentioned) is the data which could inform usage trends and savings opportunities.  …enter the Internet of Things,** where smart appliances work around peak load forecasts to improve energy cost.  Because Clark has little of its own generation (hydro) it is mostly dependent on BPA and other suppliers, so any program that can help keep wholesale costs down will benefit its customers.  Many of the conservation measures are targeted towards residential users, but the same technology can be used in APEM members’ facilities: HVAC, water heating and solid state lighting.

Jeff Harris, Chief Transformation Officer, NEEA (Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance)
Jeff demonstrated how NEEA is meeting its mission statement: Mobilizing the market toward energy efficiency is the most cost-effective way to meet our future energy needs, by describing how modest improvements to your whole building system can affect big changes in your energy use.  Most of the EE low-hanging-fruit has been taken, and energy managers see fewer high-return projects any more.  Jeff highlighted several “deep dive” projects where the solution was not in a single EE investments, but an analysis of how all the systems work together.  Example: you’ve already installed LEDs, got your incentive check, and are realizing energy savings.  So what now?  Marrying the LEDs’ heat load reduction with better insulated window retrofit kits, and reanalyzing the controls on your chiller units could extend the life of your systems and save you money.

The presentations are below; please feel free to peruse, but don’t download without permission.

We look forward to seeing you at Oregon APEM’s Spring Forum, where we’ll unravel the mystery behind the Internet of Things.  Look for the Save The Date coming your way!


Charlie Grist, Manager

Jeff Harris

Larry Blaufus


Fall 2016 Forum    

Getting Upgrade Projects off the Ground

September, 23rd 2016

The Billy Frank, Jr. Conference Center
EcoTrust Building
721 NW 9th Ave.
Portland, OR 97209

Please join us for the Oregon APEM Fall Forum focused on the business case of energy efficiency. Often short paybacks and large energy savings are not enough to get an energy efficiency project approved. Multiple agendas and driving forces collide during the planning and implementation of energy efficiency projects. Often non-energy benefits are the driving force to receiving approval for an energy efficiency project. Learn more from our speakers who are constantly driving energy efficiency projects within their organizations.  

Forum Recap Coming Soon!!!


Richard Beam

Josh Weissert

Shelly Haack & Amy Nagy

Michelle Missfeldt

Paul Kuck

Matt Travis

Summer Social/Barbecue! 

When:   Thursday, August 11, 2016, 4:00pm-8:00pm

Where:   NW Natural-4th Floor, On the Balcony!

              220 NW 2nd AV, Portland, OR 97209

Why:  NW Natural agreed to host a social event for Oregon APEM, utilizing its 4th floor balcony that overlooks portions of downtown Portland.  The event is only $10 for members and non-members.   Food and drinks (hot dogs, hamburgers, beer, wine, pop) will be provided.  Each attendee will receive two drink tickets at their admission.

This will be a great time to socialize and meet others in the industry.  We will also have a brief presentation that will focus on Energy Efficiency in Indoor Agriculture, as well as a discussion on different vantage points of the current climate.

However, while there will be a presentation, the main focus will be Networking!


Resource Innovation Institute

Roger Saunt


Summer 2016 Forum    

Introducing New Variables;
Developments in Variable Speed Technology

June 3rd, 2016

Holiday Inn
25425 SW 95th Ave, Wilsonville, OR 97070

This year’s Summer Forum was held at the Holliday Inn in Wilsonville. This was a very successful forum, featuring four great speakers and two vendors. The forum was well attended by a diverse group of professionals from across the energy industry.

The first speaker of the day was Reid Hart, PE, Senior Buildings Research and Development Engineer at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratories. Reid’s presentation focused on Motors and Variable Speed Drives for Pumps and Fans. The motor efficiency of different types of motors were discussed, from shaded pole, permanent split capacitor and electronically commutated DC motors for small motors, to general purpose and premium efficiency motors for large motors.  A relatively recent technological development, electronically commutated (EC) motors are significantly higher efficiency that older small motor technology.

Reid next discussed overall fan system efficiency and the various losses involved with a typical system. The parasitic energy losses associated with variable speed drives used to be 5-50% of peak input, however newer and larger units have losses of 2-3%. Reid noted that there needs to be more research done on the effects of VFD drive losses on motor efficiency, because there have some studies that indicate a relationship however it has not been fully analyzed.

Ried also discussed the “ideal” vs “real” affinity laws for pumps and fans, including opportunities for energy savings from static pressure reset and fan speed reductions.

The next speaker was Bob Fassiotto, controls expert from Oregon Air Reps.  Bob’s presentation focused on variable frequency drive controls, common mistakes and applications. Bob first discussed the digital and analog inputs associated with controlling supply fans. Bob explained the wire switch configuration and how to program VFDs for Run Enable, Start Interlock, Start Modes, and Stop Mode. Bob also explained BACnet protocol technical data pertaining to programming the VFD operation. Bob explained serial communication’s role in percent power monitoring, output frequency and current indication and how it can be used to do load shedding and peak energy avoidance. Programming also needs to address night set-back, PID loop creation, temperature feedback and other controls inputs and outputs. This technical presentation helped our APEM members to develop a deeper understanding of how VFD controls are set up and programmed.

The third speaker of the day was Daniel Driver, lead of the Equipment Sales Department of TraneOregon. Daniel discussed the role of variable speed technology in chilled water systems. Daniel provided a refresher on the basic refrigeration cycle and the role of compressors in cooling systems. This was followed with a detailed discussion about different types of compressors and how their efficiency and capacity is affected the use of variable speed drives. Daniel discussed centrifugal, rotary screw, and scroll compressors.  Using multiple graphs, showing the chiller efficiency (kW/Ton) verses chiller percent capacity, Daniel was able to illustrate the energy savings potential of adding variable speed technology to each of the different types of compressors.  Finally, there was an explanation of how variable speed compressors are integral to variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems to achieve high efficiency rates.

The last speaker of the day was Creighton Kerns, principal engineer at Total Mechanical, Inc. Creighton’s presentation was centered around controls and variable speed technology in existing systems in healthcare facilities. The presentation began with an exercise in determining project scopes based on facility goals, budget, and the condition of existing equipment. Creighton encouraged us to reconsider replacing equipment with ‘like for like,’ instead always considering capacity needs and energy savings. He described an example where existing air flows were insufficient to provide sufficient cooling, so larger air handler fans were needed. This upgrade would not result in energy savings, however, was necessary to maintain comfort standards within the healthcare facility. Creighton also featured an example of replacing 3-way valves with 2-way valves and adding variable speed drives to the main pumps.

We are grateful to all of our speakers for taking the time to share their knowledge with our APEM members.

Forum Announcement Pdf.


Reid Hart

Bob Fassiotto

Daniel Driver

Creighton Kearns

Summer Forum 2016 Comment Form

We would love to hear any comments you have about our Summer Forum or suggestions you may have for future forums

Name *

Spring 2016 Forum    

Energy Management Information Systems (EMIS):
Enabling Whole-Building Approaches to Energy Efficiency

March 18th, 2016

NW Natural Meeting Room, 4th Floor
One Pacific Square, 220 NW 2nd Ave.
Portland, Oregon

This March, join fellow energy management professionals, utility representatives, owners, property managers, policymakers, energy engineers and service providers for the 2016 APEM Spring Forum at NW Natural in Portland, Oregon. We will look at the features and capabilities of meter-level EMIS tools developed by energy efficiency professionals. We’ll then dive deeper into applications for M&V in commercial and industrial facilities. Next, we’ll inspire you with an expert-led panel session exploring how EMIS-based programs and advanced EIS for whole-building analysis have the ability to not only capture energy savings potential, but reduce costs, strengthen communication, and support long-term improvements in energy management practices. To end, we’ll turn you loose for lunch to engage with your peers and build connections with others from around Oregon and SW Washington.  

CEU: Continuing Education Units are available for this forum

Forum Announcement Pdf. 

Forum Recap Coming Soon!


Hannah Kramer

Dane Hobbs

Bill Koran

ECAM version 4 Excel add-in and guide download page


Spring Forum 2016 Comment Form

We would love to hear any comments you have about our Spring Forum or suggestions you may have for future forums

Name *