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Buildings account for 40% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Addressing occupant energy, water and waste behaviors can significantly reduce the carbon footprint of buildings and create savings that drop to the bottom line.

Behavior change programs are usually low cost and do not require regulations to achieve. For example, studies show that residential use feedback regularly reduces energy consumption by 5-20% [1]. Examples of programs achieving much greater savings can also be found, for instance, Oberlin College was able to reduce dorm energy and water use by 30-50% through a behavior change program [2]. Behavior-based energy efficiency and sustainability programs can also support healthier, more socially integrated places to live and work.

The annual Climate, Buildings and Behavior symposium helps real estate developers, managers, and community revitalization professionals utilize knowledge from the neuro, behavioral, and social sciences to design effective programs to improve the health and well-being of building occupants while shifting consumption behaviors. Each year, symposium participants leave with the knowledge, skills and renewed excitement needed to support sustainable behavior changes in the buildings they work and live in.

icon Deepening Feedback Loops: 2013 Climate, Buildings and Behavior Symposium Synthesis Report

[1] Vine, D., Buys, L., & Morris, P. (2013). The Effectiveness of Energy Feedback for Conservation and Peak Demand: A Literature Review. Open Journal of Energy Efficiency, 02(01), 7–15.

[2] Petersen, J. E., Shunturov, V., Janda, K., Platt, G., & Weinberger, K. (2007). Dormitory residents reduce electricity consumption when exposed to real-time visual feedback and incentives. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 8(1), 16–33.

 

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