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About BEES

BRANZ has conducted New Zealand's first nationwide survey examining energy and water consumption in a sample of predominantly commercial buildings with the aim to improve energy efficiency in the sector.

What is BEES?

Through the 6-year Building Energy End-use Study (BEES), BRANZ examined a sample of mainly commercial buildings of varying sizes in New Zealand's first nationwide survey examining energy and water consumption in our commercial buildings.

Eligible buildings included office, retail and mixed-use categories. Ineligible use types were industrial, hospital and educational facilities, residential, parking, recreational, ancillary and outbuildings. Vacant buildings or land were also classed as ineligible.

Reason for BEES

Commercial consumers spend nearly $1 billion each year on 49.32 petajoules of energy (New Zealand Energy Data File 2011).

The commercial sector was responsible for 1,011 kilotons (KT) of carbon dioxide-equivalent gases in 2008 according to New Zealand's Greenhouse Gas Inventory 1990-2009 or nearly a 20th of all our greenhouse gas emissions. Achieving even a small improvement in efficiency would have a significant impact.

The BEES research provided new understanding of resource use and indoor environments in non-residential buildings. This pinpoints where energy and water efficiency improvements can make the biggest impact, as well as facilitating greater comfort and productivity for building occupants.

The results provide better information to consumers and inform guidance and policy to improve the performance of non-residential buildings in New Zealand. More resource-efficient buildings and more productive work environments are better for business, the economy and the environment.

Who was involved?

The project was funded by BRANZ from the Building Research Levy, the former Ministry for Science and Innovation, the former Department of Building and Housing and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

The work was carried out by BRANZ, the Centre for Research Evaluation and Social Assessment (CRESA), the Centre for Building Performance Research at Victoria University of Wellington and Energy Solutions Ltd.