GSA seeks air, energy fixes for fed buildings
- By FederalSoup Staff
- Oct 08, 2020
The federal government’s workplace management agency—the General Services Administration—has announced it is seeking to hear from vendors who can design, build and retrofit workspaces to improve energy efficiency and cleaner indoor air.
Saving energy and ensuring air is well-scrubbed and safe at federal facilities are projects already popular with feds—and the wider population who use their services—in our time of intensifying climate change and the now-proven airborne pathogen COVID-19.
The GSA’s official “Request for Information” seeks to “obtain responses from vendors and other interested parties on resource efficient technologies that improve commercial building health and resilience,” as the document, published this week, states.
GSA’s RFI could lead to moves that cover a lot of ground. Implementing ways to save energy at large facilities is highlighted in federal government guidance and public advisories, both to save money and reduce pollution. These, in turn, can help to reduce “human activity” greenhouse gases—especially those created by burning fossil fuels for electricity—and could help curb climate change. With respect to indoor air quality, the new RFI could help agencies apply Centers for Disease Control guidance regarding office buildings and COVID-19, which recommends optimizing HVAC systems and increasing the use of outdoor air where practicable.
The RFI also asks vendors to chime in with proposals to “extend passive survivability and support continuity of operations during grid disruptions”—in other words, the government wants help hardening buildings to blackouts and brownouts with backup electrical supplies. The RFI mentions photovoltaics--seeking to improve onsite solar power systems to fulfill this need.
GSA manages some 370 million square feet of space affecting 1.1 million workers—and of course contractors, the public and all comers who visit and use these government facilities.