News

January 16, 2024
Recordings from the annual Building Efficiency for Sustainable Tomorrow (BEST) Center National Institute, held January 4–5, are now available. The theme of this year’s two-day, online event was “Less Carbon, More Action! Strategies for Better Buildings & Tech Education.” The 2024 National Institute, which was co-hosted by BEST and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab),... Read more
July 18, 2023
Researchers are hard at work on ways to make buildings more energy-efficient and user-friendly as part of net zero carbon emissions energy systems. That means things like windows and walls that take advantage of nature to heat and cool, better batteries to store and deliver energy when needed, and systems that can adapt to changes from the electrical grid. What would it look like to combine all of... Read more
September 15, 2021
Fumes from cooking on gas stoves and other commonly used household appliances can have a significant effect on indoor air quality. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (Berkeley Lab’s) Residential Building Systems and Indoor Environment Groups lead indoor air quality research efforts, and Staff Scientist Iain Walker recently shared tips for mitigating the health risks of cooking fumes with... Read more
April 26, 2021
Mary Ann Piette, Berkeley Lab expert in building technology and energy efficiency, recently took part in an interview with “The Hill” on the “Sustainability Imperative” during a multi-day virtual event. Host Steve Clemons, editor-at-large for The Hill, pointed out that energy consumption in buildings is of primary importance because buildings account for more than 40% of energy use in the... Read more
February 8, 2021
More than 300 people attended the 2021 Annual Institute conference, with this year’s event focused on sustaining healthy and energy efficient buildings through technician education. Key presentations were given by Lawrence Berkeley National Labortaory (Berkeley Lab) staff, including Mary Ann Piette, pictured, Division Director of Building Technology & Urban Systems (BTUS) in the Energy... Read more
September 17, 2020
Air sealing and insulation, which are common elements of energy efficiency upgrade packages, come with a bonus: In addition to saving energy, they almost always cut dampness and mold. This latest research comes from a new publication from the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab). However, the paper also found that levels of some indoor air pollutants increased... Read more
August 18, 2020
Over the last few years of frequent and intense wildfire seasons, many parts of the U.S. have experienced hazardous air quality for days on end. At the same time a number of low-cost air quality monitors have come on the market, allowing consumers to check the pollutant levels in their own homes and neighborhoods. So, air quality scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab)... Read more
August 11, 2020
Heat waves are becoming a more regular occurrence across the country. Iain Walker, Leader of the Residential Building Systems Group at Berkeley Lab, has suggestions for how to weather them. Walker has more than 20 years’ experience as a building scientist and consultant on energy use and ventilation in residential buildings. Q. Is it more efficient or economical to keep my house cool all day or... Read more
November 19, 2019
Outstanding work in the field of residential ventilation -- which ultimately resulted in making millions of homes healthier and more comfortable -- has resulted in ETA's Residential Ventilation Team being honored with a Societal Impact Award by Berkeley Lab Director Mike Witherell. Brett Singer, Iain Walker, Brennan Less and Woody Delp (pictured, left to right), were recognized for their... Read more
July 19, 2016
Berkeley Lab study assesses employment impact of widespread conversion to solar-LED lighting in developing countries.Many households in impoverished regions around the world are starting to shift away from inefficient and polluting fuel-based lighting—such as candles, firewood, and kerosene lanterns—to solar-LED systems. While this trend has tremendous environmental benefits, a new study by... Read more
August 31, 2015
Berkeley Lab energy analysis finds gaming computers consume $10 billion in electricity per year.In the world of computer gaming, bragging rights are accorded to those who can boast of blazing-fast graphics cards, the most powerful processors, the highest-resolution monitors, and the coolest decorative lighting. They are not bestowed upon those crowing about the energy efficiency of their system.... Read more
January 22, 2013
California's residential ventilation requirements in Title 24 (the State energy code for buildings) are designed to balance healthy home ventilation with efficient energy use, but some studies suggest that whole-house ventilation systems don't always meet their expected performance in either category. Commissioning, a systematic evaluation of the installed system to identify deficiencies and offer... Read more
October 25, 2012
The RESAVE website is a guide for homebuilders and energy auditors working in California on how to improve ventilation in existing residential buildings. A good mechanical ventilation system can help protect buildings and their occupants. Inadequate ventilation often leads to increased levels of moisture and pollutants in a home.https://homes.lbl.gov/ventilate-rightRESAVE is a California Energy... Read more
July 18, 2012
Help the Residential Building Systems Group of the Environmental Energy Technologies Division to model exposures to air pollutants in homes! Please take a few minutes and fill out our cooking survey.The survey asks questions about what and how you have cooked in past 24 hours in your home. The survey does not ask for any private information and should only take 10 minutes of your time. Previous... Read more
November 22, 2011
From Liisa O'Neill, Department of Energy, Office of Public Affairs:Who knew leaks could be costing Americans $5 billion every year? And that's not water leaks—it's leaks you can't even see. Typical air duct systems, both residential and commercial, typically lose 25-40 percent of heating and cooling energy, accounting for billions added to utility bills.But what if there was a simple mist that... Read more
October 27, 2011
The Energy Performance of Buildings group has a newly remodeled website. EPB works on problems associated with whole-building integration involving modeling, measurement, design and operation. Most of its tasks focus on the movement of air and associated penalties involving distribution of pollutants, energy and fresh air.... Read more
October 29, 2010
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's Home Energy Saver website project, and Home Energy magazine, have announced the launch of Home Energy Pros, an open social network for home performance and weatherization professionals.Home Energy Pros connects building professionals and others interested in home energy efficiency by offering an online community for sharing tools, resources, and knowledge... Read more
July 16, 2010
Berkeley Lab scientists Evan Mills and Rich Brown developed the Home Energy Saver (hes.lbl.gov or HomeEnergySaver.lbl.gov), a free online tool that helps consumers identify the best, most cost-effective ways to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their homes. A powerful building energy simulation program is at the core of HES, providing each user with a customized home energy... Read more
March 16, 1999
The Home Energy Saver web site is a comprehensive energy calculator and information portal for homeowners and renters. We've added a simplified calculation track-reached by entering your zip code on the top page-which performs an entire home analysis based on a short list of questions. We've upgraded the Energy Advisor track, for users who want to vary a larger number of details about their home.... Read more