Energy Management Award - sponsored by Philips Lighting NZ

The Energy Management Award is for individuals, project teams or organisations that have developed and implemented a successful, comprehensive energy management programme.

Winner – DNZ Property Fund

Close attention to detail has propelled this Wellington building to a ‘market leading' result.

DNZ Property Fund, owner of the Meridian Building on Wellington's waterfront, has won the Energy Management Award in the 2014 EECA Awards, and was Highly Commended in the Large Business category.

A rigorous regime of fine-tuning ensures the Meridian Building works as well as it was designed to do. Its many climate-responsive systems - including automatic louvres, solar control blinds, opening windows and daylight sensors - are scrutinised and adjusted to ensure optimal performance. As well as checking energy usage and tweaking the central control system as needed, the building management team is also charged with finding new opportunities to improve efficiency. This prompted a recent upgrade to highly-efficient LEDs. This diligence proved its worth when the building underwent one of the first NABERSNZ ratings for commercial buildings, scoring a ‘market-leading' 5.5 stars out of 6. With a green lease and performance requirements in place, tenant Meridian also takes a keen interest - and it's found the high-quality environment pays dividends in productivity and staff satisfaction.

The judges said: "After setting the standard for design, this building's now set the standard for management. You can't get performance this good without ongoing, exacting attention to detail, and the NABERSNZ score proves they're getting it right. Exceptional."

Highly commended – Kapiti Coast District Council

An ethos of CO2 reduction and energy efficiency touches all aspects of council operations - from its own facilities to community schemes.

The Council has set high targets - aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2021, eventually moving to net zero emissions. It's already cut CO2 emissions by 48% since 2009/10 through switching to renewables such as wood fuel, improved energy efficiency, and better landfill management. Despite being nearly a fifth larger, its refurbished civic building is using less energy. Close management of council properties - comprising targeted upgrades and staff practice - is driving down energy use, such as a 26% energy drop at its Waikanae Pool complex. The first Council to gain CEMARS certification, its programme is overseen by a working group comprising senior managers from across the organisation. The carefully budgeted programme re-invests the savings, making its corporate energy management efforts self-funding.

The judges said: "A deep scope of work, covering everything from energy management to carbon impact of diesel across the fleet, to investing in renewable energy."

Commended – Cold Storage Nelson and Simply Energy

A unique energy purchasing deal, aligned with improved efficiency, is saving $250,000 a year.

Working closely with Simply Energy, Cold Storage Nelson has achieved energy savings of more than 2GWh a year, while increasing its cold storage capacity - equating to 30% energy savings on a product throughput basis. A major electricity user, in 2009 Cold Storage Nelson adopted the strategy of investing in more modern, efficient plant. But it didn't stop there - Simply Energy established the company as a direct purchaser of electricity on the wholesale market, the first non-Transpower connected consumer to do so. The addition of controls and software to manage demand in real time, means Cold Storage Nelson can maximise its cost savings by shifting energy use to non-peak periods and avoiding price spikes. Even more impressively, the company's achieved these savings while increasing capacity of its Tauranga facility by 70%.

The judges said: "An innovative approach to a blend of supply and demand side initiatives. It's both cost-effective and easily replicated, opening up new technical solutions in the market."

Commended – Auckland War Memorial Museum

A tightly-managed project to control energy use has halved CO2 emissions and sparked interest across the sector.

Electricity use is down by a third and natural gas nearly two thirds, thanks to a three-stage energy management project that involved redesigning and programming all heating and cooling systems. The Museum's improved the environment for its valuable collections and reduced its annual energy spend by $300,000 while enhancing staff and visitor comfort. It's achieved this despite running more events and energy-intensive multi-media exhibits. On top of its own ambitious goal to be one of Australasia's most sustainable organisations, the Museum is now striving to be a catalyst for change in others, proactively sharing its experience and success both in New Zealand and Australia. The next stage in its energy plans will see a solar PV array installed on the roof of the iconic building - a project that will also become a focus of its educational programmes.

The judges said: "Despite the unique challenges of its environment, the Museum has addressed its issues with positivity and found great savings. It will deliver long-term benefits to the city in energy and educational terms."