The interface of a new reporting tool for the AIA's 2030 Commitment.
AIA The interface of a new reporting tool for the AIA's 2030 Commitment.

A new tool from the AIA and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) aims to standardize reporting for firms participating in the AIA’s 2030 Commitment. As of last year, 132 firms were signed up for the program. The Web-based 2030 Design Data Exchange (DDx) launched earlier this month offers firms a centralized, hosted location to compile, compare, and submit project data to the 2030 program. Project information submitted in 2013 and 2014 will be automatically added to the new database.

Firms can use the DDx tool to readily track energy performance across multiple years for their portfolio of submitted work—a departure from the previous method of maintaining their own spreadsheets for reporting. Additionally, users can anonymously compare a project’s predicted performance to that of other projects within the DDx database. The platform syncs with the DOE’s open-source Standard Energy Efficiency Data Platform for managing energy consumption across multiple buildings within a single organization.

The AIA launched its voluntary 2030 Commitment in 2009 to encourage firms to reduce the carbon footprint of projects to neutral by the year 2030. The initiative differs from the nonprofit Architecture 2030's Challenge, which centers on resource consumption and emissions among buildings. A report issued last fall by AIA detailed its initiative's progress to-date, which includes​ an increase in firms using energy-modeling software to predict a building's anticipated energy-use intensity, the metric on which the 2030 Commitment is based.

The tool was previewed​ at the 2014 AIA Convention in Chicago last June by Rand Ekman, AIA, director of sustainability at CannonDesign, and Kevin Settlemyre, founder and president of Arlington, Mass.–based consulting firm Sustainable IQ. For more information, see the DDx FAQ.