As the world battles with the challenges of Climate Change it is clear there must be a move away from Fossil Fuels. Unfortunately, buildings account for ~40% of all climate change impacts. To reduce this impact buildings are becoming more efficient and using electricity as the sole fuel source.
What is Building Electrification?
Building electrification is the process of converting buildings from fossil fuel-powered appliances and equipment to electric alternatives. This includes things like heating and cooling, cooking, water heating, and lighting.
There are many benefits to building electrification, including:
- Reduced greenhouse gas emissions. When buildings use electricity instead of fossil fuels, they emit less carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere. This helps to combat climate change and improve air quality.
- Improved indoor air quality. Electric appliances and equipment produce fewer pollutants than fossil fuel-powered appliances, which can lead to improved indoor air quality. This is especially important for people with respiratory problems.
- Energy efficiency. Electric appliances and equipment are often more energy-efficient than fossil fuel-powered appliances, which can save money on energy bills.
- Comfort. Electric appliances and equipment can provide more comfortable heating and cooling than fossil fuel-powered appliances. This is especially important in hot and cold climates.
There are a few challenges to building electrification, including:
- The cost of upfront investment. It can be expensive to switch to electric appliances and equipment. However, the long-term savings on energy bills can offset the initial cost.
- The need for a reliable electricity grid. Building electrification requires a reliable electricity grid. If the grid is not reliable, there is a risk of power outages.
- The need for new infrastructure. In some cases, new infrastructure may be needed to support building electrification, such as charging stations for electric vehicles or upgraded electrical panels and wiring to service new appliances.
Despite these challenges, building electrification is a promising way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and save money on energy bills. As the cost of electric appliances and equipment continues to decline and the electricity grid becomes more reliable, building electrification is likely to become more widespread in the future.
Here are some examples of how building electrification is being used:
- New construction. Many new buildings are being designed to be all-electric, meaning that they use electricity for all of their energy needs. This includes heating, cooling, cooking, water heating, and lighting.
- Retrofitting existing buildings. Existing buildings can also be retrofitted to be more electric. This can involve replacing old fossil fuel-powered appliances and equipment with electric alternatives.
- Fleet electrification. The transportation sector is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions. Electrifying fleets of vehicles, such as cars, buses, and trucks, can help to reduce emissions from transportation.
Building electrification is a key part of the transition to a clean energy future. By reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving air quality, and saving money on energy bills, building electrification can help to create a healthier and more sustainable planet.
Where Do I Begin?
Not sure where to start? We can help you develop a comprehensive plan to move your building into a place where it solely run off electricity. Some of the recommended upgrades may include a balance ventilation system, electrical appliance replacement, EV charging station, heat-pump systems for both space heating/cooling and domestic hot water. Moving to all electric also comes with the ability to partially or completely offset yearly energy consumption with the installation of solar panels. See Net Zero Energy.
But What will it Cost?
Unfortunately, replacing a building’s infrastructure can be an expensive venture. The cost will vary from project-to-project dependent upon the efficiency of the building, the owner’s goals & priorities, and the existing infrastructure.
However, as climate change is a problem that impacts the global community, governments, utilities, and other organizations are stepping up to help ease the transition to an all-electric future. There is an ever-growing list of financial incentives including tax credits, rebates, and discounts that may apply to your project. [bundle] can help identify and organize the incentives that would apply to your project.