Retail Energy Management


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Strategy & Commitment

1. Reduction strategy​ and goals

• Ad hoc efforts, no formal program

• No internal goals or annual internal goals based only on cost reduction

• Defined energy management roadmap with internal energy or greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals

• Benchmarking activities with peers through RILA, EEI, PRSM, DOE and/or another program

• Using standard metrics for measuring energy performance

• Public energy efficiency or GHG goal

• Reporting to third-parties such as Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) and pursuing recognition opportunities

• Setting a goal to improve ENERGY STAR or other third party sustainability measurement score across full portfolio

• Public renewable energy or GHG goal addressing Scope(s) of emissions (I, II, III)

• Using a balanced scorecard (people, planet, and profit) system for reviewing energy strategies and projects

• Integrating supply chain/value chain into energy/GHG reduction strategy

• Collaborating with industry peers to establish sector goals and initiatives

• Setting or set science-based Scope I, II, and III GHG reduction goals

• Net zero store operations goal

• Goal to be supplied by 100% renewable energy by 2050

• Online public dashboard updated regularly with goal progress and challenge

2. Corporate Office Employee & Vendor Engagement

• Ad hoc engagement of corporate office employees and vendors

• Training (one-time or limited) relevant corporate office employees and vendors with energy reduction opportunities within their own roles

• Soliciting office energy reduction suggestions from corporate office employees

• Providing support for personal employee energy savings efforts (i.e., biking/public transit incentives, etc.)

• Hosting events for corporate office employees to learn about energy reduction in their retail roles and in their home

• Following internal communications plan to periodically update and engage corporate office employees and vendors

• Encouraging vendors to improve energy performance of their operations

• Hosting annual “Energy Summit” with all vendors that impact energy consumption

• Integrating energy management training into onboarding and continuing education for all corporate office employees and vendors

• Collecting vendor energy performance data through internal questionnaires or a third party (e.g., CDP Supply Chain)

• Holding corporate office cross-departmental energy reduction competitions

• Testing and actively partnering with research groups or vendors to design next generation equipment

• Energy performance evaluation included in vendor selection

​3. Executive Engagement

• No stated corporate commitment to energy management form senior executives

• Sharing energy success stories with executive team on an ad hoc basis


• Sharing energy success stories with executive team on a quarterly basis

• Executives reiterate corporate energy reduction goals directly to stakeholders

• Contributing to public case studies

• Regular access to and visibility of executives on energy management efforts

• Executives refer to energy successes in some external communications

• DOE Better Buildings Challenge partner

​• Energy performance shared by executives in quarterly leadership updates to company

• Some C-suite and board level incentives tied to environmental goals

Resource Investment

4. Energy Team

• Either no designated energy team or one person or small team responsible for energy management

• No explicit internal instructions to coordinate and fund energy investments across the organization beyond procurement

• Energy manager (or team) with specific function to advance energy projects

• Hiring external consultants or service providers to help implement energy projects or expansion of internal energy team to implement additional energy projects

• Multi-person energy team with division of responsibilities

• Accessing energy training and other educational resources to boost team’s capabilities

• Documenting process to identify, design, select, and execute energy use reduction projects into existing store

• Periodic cross-functional team meetings to identify and execute on energy management strategy implement energy projects

• Internal champions in key departments like sustainability, facilities, construction, etc.

• Building design and operation is approached as a system

​• Working with universities, non-profits, government laboratories, etc. to supplement energy management resources with additional expertise and research

​5. Engaging Utilities

​• No engagement beyond setting up utilities for facilities

​• Participating in utility-related events like EEI’s National Accounts meetings

• Using some utility energy efficiency incentives

• Identifying optimal rate schedules and procurement agreements

• Developing working strong relationships with utility account representativesies who share new or custom offerings

• Proactively maximizing appropriate energy efficiency incentives by regularly reviewing programs

• Full-time staff person or external consultant tracking incentive programs

• Developing working relationships with Public Utility Commissions (PUCs) and occasionally testifying on key issues

• Implementing an energy procurement strategy that capitalizes on market-specific timing & and opportunity and renewables

• Member of Corporate Renewable Energy Buyers Principles

• Partnering with utilities to develop retail-specific energy efficiency and renewables incentive programs or procurement offerings

• Regularly testify to PUCs on key efficiency and renewables issues

6. Leased Store Management (primarily applicable to retailers in malls)​

​• No internal (i.e. real estate, construction, legal) or landlord engagement on energy reduction programs

• Educating internal stakeholders about the impact of leased store challenges on operational expenses

• Using stores with submetering and consumption-based billing to extrapolate benchmarks and prove need for energy transparency and lease language revisions

• Member of RILA-ICSC Landlord-Tenant Energy Partnership

• Developing and piloting revised lease language, Letters of Intent, premises questionnaires and other leasing documents to overcome energy management challenges

• Working with construction to increase minimum efficiency of standard build-out spec design

• Coordinating and collaborating with landlords to deliver high efficiency box shell options in new stores to maximize efficiency of tenant fit-out

• Using lease adjustments to correct for split-incentives and/or installing submeters in all new stores

• Periodically discussing energy opportunities (i.e. lighting, HVAC, solar, electric vehicles, etc.) with key landlords for all leases

• Working with landlords to obtain common area energy data

• Recognized by Green Lease Leaders or another program

• Incorporating energy reduction measures and submeter installation in all new and existing lease agreements

• Highly efficient standard build-out spec design

People and Tools

​7. Energy Management Information System (EMIS)

• Basic alert, control, and analytic capabilities

• Measuring and tracking energy on a store-by-store basis at the utility billing level

• EMIS included in new stores

• Developing plans to deploy EMIS in stores, corporate offices, data centers, and DCs

• Periodically reviewing some control set-points, lighting control timers, etc.

• Basic measures are available but not real-time measure

• Implementing EMIS at all facilities

• EMIS includes controls, remote monitoring and tracking for real-time usage, advanced alerts, analytic capabilities, and demand response

• Incorporating a decision tool to identify opportunities for energy reduction across full portfolio

• ISO certified 50001

• Implementing a proactive maintenance program based on EMIS data to reduce energy waste

• Automated Demand Response 2.0 capable

• Recipient of a DOE Smart Energy Analytics Campaign or other third party award

​• Vertical integration of data from EMIS at operational level to enterprise reporting, benchmarking, and analytics

​8. Measuring, Tracking, and Benchmarking

• No systematic measurement, tracking, or benchmarking program in place

• Using utility bill pay system and/or EPA’s ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager to benchmark energy performance and identify anomalies

• Using energy data to identify and analyze best and worst performing stores

• Benchmarking project outcomes with peers through RILA, EEI, DOE or another program

• Measuring and tracking Scope I & II GHG emissions

• Tracking all possible properties in EPA’s ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager or equivalent software platform and having data automatically uploading dataed via web services

• Tracking co-benefits to improved energy performance (like brand value, environmental performance, employee morale)

• Measuring and tracking Scope III GHG emissions, including vendor emissions

• Using enterprise software to perform automated benchmarking, bill/rate analysis, measurement & verification (M&V), and advanced analytics

• Employing energy modeling

• Using EMIS and submetering to measure, track, and benchmark asset-level energy performance

• Working with ENERGY STAR to improve platform and recruit/mentor other members

• Integrating sales data, comp sales, foot traffic, etc. with energy data

​​9. Aligning Incentives for Energy Performance

• Energy costs not considered in relevant business decisions

• Identifying alignment with internal partners to consider lifecycle costs including facilities, maintenance, real estate, store operations, construction, etc.

• Awards/recognition for biggest contributions to energy conservation

• Store incentives and P&L statements tied to store energy use (as a controllable expense)

• Some departments can recuperate some of the cost savings from energy projects

• Some employee incentives tied to energy performance

• Departments can capture the majority of cost savings and reinvest in new projects or dedicated long-term funding

• District/regional managers and department heads’ bonuses recognize energy performance

• Corporate bonuses recognize energy performance and/or peer rankings

• Evaluation of projects considers total cost of ownership as well as non-financial benefits of project implementation

10. Front Line Employee Engagement

• No engagement or educating through basic environmental-awareness signage in stores

• Creating guide for store teams ranking behavioral changes by respective opportunity for increased store profitability

• Developing store green team(s) or energy advocates to monitor on-site performance, reduction opportunities, and provide feedback to corporate energy management team

• Including store managers and associates in energy audits

• Posting store energy consumption for all store associates to compare their store to other similar stores

• Leveraging online platform for employees to review store consumption and submit ideas to reduce use

• Providing support for personal employee energy savings efforts (i.e. biking/public transit incentives, etc.)

• Energy awareness campaign throughout stores, including signage, orientations, periodic trainings, competitions, in-store green teams, store meetings, scorecards, newsletters, etc.

• Providing collaborative best practices platform for high-initiative employees to receive recognition while sharing best practices with colleagues

• Training employees to educate customers about company’s energy/ sustainability efforts

Projects and Data

​​11. Financial Management

• Limited interaction with finance team (e.g. only for project approval)

• Simple ROI used to evaluate potential projects

• Energy projects held to stricter payback requirements than other projects

• Allow use of utility and government rebates and incentives for capital improvement projects

• Considering energy reduction projects as part of annual capital planning

• Communicating energy reduction in terms of the bottom line

• Project proposals that meet minimum internal finance requirements are likely to be funded

• Measurement & verification (M&V) designed to track all financial benefits and strengthen future business cases

• Considering ROI, internal rate of return, hurdle rate, net present value, and energy price growth expectations in energy strategy and projects

• Strong working relationship with finance team; present energy efficiency projects as investments

• Maintain list of “shovel-ready” projects if excess capital becomes available

• Formally integrating finance team into energy management decisions

• Finance team consistently reaches out often allocates makes excess capital becomes forto energy projects

• Developing a process with the finance team to quickly scale technologies once proven in successful in pilots

• Evaluating alternative internal and external financing models (beyond rebates and incentives)

• Deploying innovative internal and/or external financing models

• Using environmental key performance indicators (KPIs) like GHG emissions

• Projects that exceed the internal ROI are funded through incremental debt financing

​12. Systems Procurement

​• Operational costs/energy costs not considered in procurement decisions

​• Some consideration of total cost of ownership in procurement decisions and negotiations

• Teams that procure energy consuming equipment consider total cost of ownership in purchase decisions

• Procuring ENERGY STAR Certified for all qualified products

• Considering energy costs as an integral component of vendor and initiative valuation

​• Procurement business rules require net reduction in GHG emissions

​13. Building Auditing, Re-tuning, and Retro-commissioning

​• No comprehensive building re-tuning strategy in place; only re-tuning buildings as issues arise

• Walk-through energy audits on ad hoc basis

• Include utility-performed energy audits as part of routine business reviews with national account reps.

​• Strategy in place to periodically audit and re-tune stores, corporate offices, data centers, and DCs to identify and act on reduction opportunities

• Implementing portfolio-wide re-tuning and replacement strategy

• Performing regular retrocommissioning on buildings and using results to judge and motivate GC/ developer/ builder performance

• Re-tuning building systems on a regular schedule

• Working with landlords to ensure common areas are periodically re-tuned


​14. Reporting & Communicating

• Internal reporting only to relevant stakeholders

• Private CSR or Sustainability Report

• Energy efforts in public CSR or Sustainability Report or on public website

• Ad hoc reporting to field and corporate staff on energy strategies and successes

• Sharing leading practices and success stories with other organizations at sustainability or energy conferences

• Promoting third party recognitions (e.g., DOE or EPA awards, Platt Global Energy Awards, inclusion in Dow Jones Sustainability Index, etc.)

• Reporting externally to CDP or other formal channels

• Framing success stories in terms of profits generated, costs saved, risks reduced, and/or competitive advantages created

• Generating energy scorecards to compare buildings

• Creating and using an executive energy dashboard

• Acting on benchmarking data to target energy performance improvements where most needed

• Commissioning third-party verification of energy savings/GHG reduction

• Publishing a company newsletter, blog, and/or social media dedicated exclusively to energy

• Comprehensive energy communications strategy

​• Developing annual integrated financial and sustainability reports

• Using SASB standards when preparing annual 10-K filings

​15. Consumer-targeted Education

• No consumer-facing energy messaging

​• Messaging on website and Sustainability or CSR Report

• Basic in-store signage about company’s energy management efforts

• Social media used to occasionally share energy success stories and tips

• Ad hoc product marketing or promotional campaigns to communicate corporate energy efforts

• In-store signage and other channels to promote company’s efforts (in-store intercom announcements, circulars, website, etc.)

• Regular alignment of corporate energy efforts with product marketing or promotions

• Educating store associates on energy/environmental strategy and communicating message to customers

• Messaging to help consumers reduce their home energy usage

• Promoting/providing alternative transportation to stores

​16. Collaborative Involvement

​• No involvement in collaborations

• Joining results-oriented groups like RILA’s Retail Energy Management program or DOE’s Better Building Alliance

• Actively sharing practices, developing case studies, supporting peer companies

• Partnering with NGO(s) to identify improvement opportunities

​• Identifying opportunities to develop new collaborations with government, NGOs, peers, etc.

Energy Consuming Systems

17. Lighting

• Periodically review lighting options

• Using T8 fluorescents for interior lighting

• Using LEDs in new construction for all exterior and sign lighting

• Occupancy sensors where appropriate in new construction

• Testing in-store high performance lighting and developing rollout plans

• Implementing centralized control and monitoring

• Implementing portfolio-wide high performance lighting rollout where appropriate

• Merchandising and energy team coordination in lighting design

• Retrofitting site and sign lighting with LEDs

• Retrofitting with occupancy sensors

• Eligible for EPAct tax deductions due to level of light power density

• Implementing high-performance lighting throughout stores, corporate offices, data centers, DCs, and parking lots

• Daylight harvesting strategy in place

• Building and space designs are optimized to reduce lighting use and follow Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) recommended practices

• Recipient of a DOE Interior Lighting Campaign, USGBC LEEP Campaign, or other third party award

• Piloting next geeration systems that integrate lighting with other energy consuming systems

• Working with vendors of other in-store energy-consuming devices (e.g. vending machines) to reduce lighting load of their systems

​18. Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC)

​• Periodically review higher efficiency HVAC options

• Testing new higher-efficiency HVAC units, O&M practices, and Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) retrofits

• Implementing a quality maintenance program following ASHRAE/ACCA Standard 180

• Developing roll-out strategy for highest efficiency replacement and retrofit options

• Right sizing of HVAC tonnage based on heat loss/heat gain calculations

• Economizers, CO2 sensors, and RH sensors to inform runtimes and set points

• Performing duct sealing projects to minimize air leakages and accompanying energy waste.

• Highest efficiency HVAC installed throughout corporate offices, stores, data centers, and DCs

• Implementing an active HVAC asset performance tracking program and efficient operational practices

• Periodically reviewing newest technologies

• Recipient of a DOE Advanced Rooftop-unit Campaign (ARC) campaign or other third party award

• Working with vendors to define next generation specifications for integrated HVAC, lighting, and controls systems

​​19. Plug Loads

​• Inventorying the in-store devices that consume plug energy (e.g. vending machines, store displays)

• Installing basic monitoring and controlling devices for plug-in devices (e.g. vending misers)

​• Submetering device energy usage across stores to benchmark devices and identify alerts

• Performing research and pilots with DOE’s Plug & Process Loads Technology Solutions Team

• Installing energy-saving devices from vendors

• Using a mobile application to remotely and/or automatically turn on/off plug loads

• Working with device vendors to develop technologies that consume minimal energy necessary for functionality, or to completely eliminate the need for energy

​20. Energy Storage, Generation, and Demand Response

​• No energy storage, generation, or demand response programs in plac

• Purchasing Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) to offset a portion of electricity purchases

• Installing a few onsite solar installations using Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs)

• Implementing a demand response program

• Researching Energy Storage

• Testing a variety of onsite renewable energy technologies across facility types

• Developing a renewables strategy, including a financial plan and prioritization of opportunities by state/region, participation in community solar, remote net metering, and virtual net metering

• REC procurement policy

• Demand response participation in most viable markets

• Energy storage installed in some viable markets

• Implementing strategic utility, onsite, and offsite procurement strategy

• Testing new fuel cells, geothermal, battery storage, phase change materials, or other storage and generation technologies

• Maximizing use of demand response

• Developing renewable energy purchasing cooperatives with landlords and other retailers

• Making large offsite renewable energy purchases

• Working with utilities to develop green power offerings

• Meeting or exceeding 100% of energy supplied by renewables

• Procurement subject to additionality requirement

​21. Refrigeration

• Aware of refrigerant types in portfolio & associated energy factors

• Purchasing only base model efficiency refrigeration

• Doors are used on 80% of all low temp cases

• Choosing some refrigerant types in portfolio based on associated energy factors

• ENERGY STAR procurement policy for all qualified products

• Routinely cleaning compressors and other components that can impact efficiency

• Doors are used on 100% of low temp cases

• Using doors on 50% or more of medium-temperature refrigerated display cases (excluding fresh bulk produce)

• All compressors are remotely located outside the store to avoid waste heat issues (or waste heat is vented/piped outside)

• Controlling anti-sweat heaters in new cases

• Using doors on 80% or more of medium-temperature refrigerated display cases (excluding fresh bulk produce)

• Anti-sweat control in all cases

• Utilizing demand control kitchen ventilation (DCKV)

• Piloting stores using natural refrigerants or alternative approaches to dramatically lower the climate impacts associated with direct emissions of refrigerants

​22. Food Service

​• Some attention paid to operational procedures, like ensuring walk-in doors don’t remain open

• Establishing guidelines for efficient operational procedures

• Installing high-efficiency (e.g., ENERGY STAR) equipment in some stores

• Installing high-efficiency (e.g., ENERGY STAR) equipment in all new stores

• Planning for continual improvement through retrofits or replacements

• Build-out specs require nearly all equipment to be of highest-available efficiency

• Benchmarking energy metrics are extended to deli/food service areas and energy efficiency measures are identified, approved and adopted

• Testing next generation food service efficiency technologies with vendors

• Actively using energy information from benchmarking or EMIS to analyze continuous opportunities to reduce energy

​​23. Architectural and shell program

• Have a standard build-out document with energy specs

• Meets local, state, and federal codes

• Build-out specs include efficiency requirements for most energy intensive systems like refrigeration, HVAC, lighting, etc.

• Energy team is a decision-making partner on new store construction

• Using third-party or equivalent standards such as LEED for Retail, LEED Volume, LEED for Commercial Interiors, BREEM, etc.

• Using weather stripping and double pane windows where applicable

• Using ENERGY STAR by Design tool

• Building design is approached as a system by achieving 20% or better than ASHRAE code by design

• Building and construction processes use an enhanced commissioning process on every building

• Building design is approached as a system and energy points are maximized by achieving 50% or better than ASHRAE code by design

• Commissioning data is integrated with the EMS program to provide performance and startup data tracking (for incorporation into benchmarking programs)

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