Savings to sustainability: Application of a novel approach to delivering a sustainable built environment

Mark Sanders, Kristen Parrish, Shankar Earni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This paper presents a novel finance project delivery concept, savings to sustainability (S2S), that bridges the existing gaps between energy projects implemented using alternative financing mechanisms, sustainability initiatives, and greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions. Bridging these three areas will have a synergistic effect in terms of meeting federal and other agency goals for energy, water, and GHG reduction. The most common finance project delivery method used in the federal sector to date is the energy savings performance; however, these contracts are driven by financial, rather than energy consumption or GHG, savings. The aggressive requirements pertaining to sustainability and GHG reduction goals requires an integrated and more holistic approach to retrofit and renovation projects. The S2S finance project delivery method enables existing buildings to achieve net zero carbon through a phased approach that begins with energy and water efficiency, then on-site renewable power generation, and finally green power procurement. We present here two case studies implementing key elements of the S2S concept; the first is a federal agency project covering three campuses in Puerto Rico, the second is a university campus in central California.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)156-163
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Architectural Engineering
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Building design
  • Energy efficiency
  • Financing
  • Management
  • Project delivery
  • Renewable energy
  • Renovation
  • Sustainable development


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