8. A Greener Shade of Commissioning

A contribution to climate action

The static structure of a commercial building makes it easy to forget about the machines running inside and their contribution to the climate change.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change, buildings are responsible for about one-third of global energy use and one-fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions (this doesn’t include the embodied emissions in getting them built).

A Practical And Accessible Solution

In the Project Book, Colin Ellis writes that “projects are the lifeblood of an organisation. However if we look into all the projects delivered across different sectors only an average 34 per cent of projects are considered successful, a rise of only 5 per cent in the past 20 years. Organisations have been throwing money at project management for years and still don’t see an impact”.

It’s important then that a project manager (PM) works in the commissioning organisation providing co-ordination and support across the disciplines. With owner leadership and the right people engaged the commissioning process will deliver successful projects for both owner and their project partners . Goals such as using less energy by up to 50%, and providing a healthier indoor environment for occupants, and more can be achieved.

Rating systems including Green Star in Australia are consistently elevating the role of the commissioning process (CxP) to all phases of the project starting early in design. This is a big change to what actually gets done today where commissioning is sidelined to the end of construction with a compressed program to completion. However many owners, and their project partners know only too well that any system is only as good as its weakest link.