A new standard intended to help organizations worldwide save money in commercial and industrial facilities has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Developed by 45 International Organization for Standardization (ISO) member countries, ISO 50001, a voluntary standard, provides a framework for continuous energy-performance improvement through adoption of best practices that reduce the energy use of existing equipment and facilities, require the use of energy-performance data in targeting cost-effective upgrades, and emphasize the design and installation of highly efficient energy systems and equipment.

ISO 50001, which is available worldwide and can be applied across economic sectors, addresses:

• The integration of energy efficiency into management practices.

• The optimization of energy systems and related equipment with regard to overall system efficiency.

• The benchmarking, measurement, documentation, and reporting of energy use, savings, and reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions.

• Transparency and communication within organizations regarding management of energy resources.

• Design and procurement practices for energy-efficient equipment, energy systems, and processes.

According to the DOE, organizations adopting the standard can expect to achieve measurable energy savings in as little as two years, a projection based on five U.S. industrial pilot projects conducted between 2008 and 2010. The facilities, for which ANSI/MSE 2000:2008—which was used as an example in developing ISO 50001—was adopted, achieved energy-efficiency improvements of 6.5 percent to 17 percent over a period of two to three years.

The DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program and Building Technologies Program are supporting implementation of ISO 50001 through Superior Energy Performance, a voluntary certification program that will launch for industry in 2012 and later expand to commercial buildings.

The DOE is developing and disseminating a portfolio of energy-management resources to help facilities implement ISO 50001.

The implementation of ISO 50001 also is being coordinated through the DOE’s Federal Energy Management Program and Clean Energy Ministerial.

The ISO 50001 project committee was jointly led by the United States—through the American National Standards Institute (ANSI)—and Brazil. The DOE supported ANSI’s role in developing the standard and contributed to efforts to ensure ISO 50001 is consistent with U.S. energy policy and strategy.

For more information on ISO 50001, including how to purchase it, click here.

For more information about the DOE’s involvement with ISO 50001 and Superior Energy Performance, click here.