A series of guides written by building organizations to advance energy efficiency are having a positive impact, according to a new assessment commissioned by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

The assessment, which focused on ASHRAE members’ use of guides, determined that the society’s Advanced Energy Design Guide series is helping achieve 30 percent energy savings over the minimum code requirements of ASHRAE standard 90.1, “Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings.”

The assessment, conducted by the Energy Center of Wisconsin, also found that more than 70 percent of ASHRAE members who have used the guides view them as credible and useful design resources, and that the recommendations by climate zone and tips are particularly helpful.

Almost all participants in the assessment agreed that they would use the guides on future projects.

“The results of this assessment illustrate the positive impact these documents have had on the market,” said ASHRAE President Gordon Holness. “The guides are being used to guide new construction projects and building retrofits and they are seen as a valuable communications tool for influencing clients and other design team members to include energy efficient elements in building design.”

With roughly 250,000 copies of the six guides now in circulation, they have been the most widely distributed documents that ASHRAE has published. The guides were developed in collaboration with the American Institute of Architects, the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America, the U.S. Green Building Council and the U.S. Department of Energy.

The guides are available at www.ashrae.org/freeaedg.