GBCI Launches PEER for Electricity Market

WASHINGTON — Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) officially launched the Performance Excellence in Electricity Renewal (PEER) rating system designed to verify sustainable electricity system performance on April 29.

Modeled after the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED green building rating system, PEER evaluates power generation, transmission and distribution systems, focusing on efficiency, quality, reliability, resiliency and the environment. The rating system is a tool for building industry professionals looking to lower costs, minimize risks and improve building efficiency, as well as power system for designers and power industry professionals aiming for best-in-class standards.

"Through LEED, USGBC has created a common language, standard and platform for advancing knowledge, technology and innovation in green building. It now aims to do the same in the power sector with PEER and we anticipate similar transformative results,” said John Kelly, program lead of the PEER rating system, in a statement.

PEER looks at four outcome categories to help evaluate and set a standard for system performance that best meets customers’ needs. These include reliability and resiliency; energy efficiency and environment; operational effectiveness; and customer contribution. PEER places the most weight on measurable performance outcomes, such as reduced interruptions and emissions, but also assesses capabilities, design considerations and processes, according to the PEER website.

GBCI, based in Washington, D.C., will serve as the independent, third party, global certification and credentialing body for PEER.

“Buildings don’t exist in a vacuum, so integration with other industries, such as energy and power, is crucial if we are to create a more sustainable built environment. PEER will be a transformative tool for power systems regulation, design and operation,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO & founding chair, USGBC, and CEO, GBCI, in a statement. “It is a great complement to the array of rating systems already administered by GBCI, in particular LEED, the most widely used green building rating system in the world."

PEER came about due to inefficiencies in electricity systems. For example, only half of what customers pay for electricity goes to pay for the electricity that powers homes, offices or electronics. The rest is lost converting fuel to electricity, delivering electricity to where it’s needed and producing heat waste and emissions, according to the Department of Energy. Additionally, poor electricity system reliability and power quality is costing consumers and businesses more than $200 billion annually.

GBCI is a third-party organization that administers certification for LEED, the International Well Building Institute’s WELL Building Standard (WELL) and the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB), in addition to PEER. WELL is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying and monitoring features of the built environment that impact human health and wellbeing through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind. The GRESB assesses sustainability performance of real estate portfolios around the globe.

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