Tuesday, November 30, 2010

UPDATE: Existing Commercial Buildings Energy Performance Ordinance

UPDATE - November 30, 2010

BOMA San Francisco Members:

On  November 23, 2010, Mayor Newsom introduced the substitute Existing Commercial Buildings Energy Performance Ordinance, which is scheduled to be heard at the Board of Supervisors Land Use & Economic Development Committee on December 6, 2010 at 1:00 p.m.:

Revisions from the prior version from July/August include: 
  • Increased the minimum square footage of buildings required to comply from 5,000 to 10,000 sq. ft. (Section 2002, line 8);
  • As described in Section 2004(a), for buildings submitting their benchmarking data for the first time, a window of time was added between when they are required to submit their data and when the data is made public.  This will allow some time for the facility to review and ensure the accuracy of the data before it is posted;
  • Section 2006 was added to clarify compliance requirements for municipal buildings;
    • The benchmarking requirements are much the same as those for commercial buildings, the primary exception being allowing the City to use a benchmarking tool other than Energy Star Portfolio Manager if it deems another tool to be more relevant for municipal buildings, as long as it provides the same type of data (Portfolio Manager is currently quite limited in the types of buildings it has categories for, and does not include many municipal building types, ie fire stations, etc.).
    • However, because the City owns over 1,000 buildings and it would be impractical to expect the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) to conduct energy audits in all of those buildings in the timeline required in Section 2004(b), this section allows the SFPUC to elect to develop a compliance plan, to be submitted by July 1, 2011, to develop protocols and a compliance timeline for conducting energy audits in municipal buildings.  The expectation is that the SFPUC will perform 20-30 municipal energy audits per year.
  • An exception was added for unoccupied buildings (Section 2008(c)(2));
  • Administrative fines were revised as described in Section 2009(b).

Thank you to Johanna Partin, Director of Climate Protection Initiatives - Office of Mayor Gavin Newsom, for this information.

Please review legislation as soon as you can.  Please send any feedback to Ken Cleaveland at kenc@boma.com and John Bozeman at johnb@boma.com, and what positives/negatives aspects you see emanating from passage/implementation of this ordinance. 

Most importantly, if you would like to attend the December 6th meeting of the Land Use Committee to testify in support of this legislation and/or add any specific comments.  Please email us.   


Original Post - August 12, 2010

BOMA San Francisco members have been working with the San Francisco Department of the Environment to craft the Existing Commercial Buildings Energy Performance Ordinance. Click here to review the ordinance.

The proposal would require owners of nonresidential buildings in San Francisco to obtain energy efficiency audits, as well as to annually measure and disclose energy performance. It would also requires the Department of Environment to collect summary statistics about the energy performance of nonresidential buildings and make those statistics available to the public.

The proposal would require the owner of any nonresidential building in San Francisco with a gross area of 5,000 square feet or greater to conduct a comprehensive energy efficiency audit for each such building not less than once every 5 years. The audits would have to meet specified industry standards and be conducted by a qualified energy professional in accordance with rules promulgated by the Director of the Department of the Environment. The size of the building would determine the scope of the audit.

The energy professional would prepare a signed report of the energy efficiency audit meeting industry standards. The report would include, among other things: a list of capital and non-capital measures that would improve the building's energy efficiency; an estimate of the approximate energy savings, avoided energy cost, and costs to implement those measures; and an estimate of the economic value of the corrective measures. The ordinance would require the building owner to file with the Department of the Environment a report confirming that the energy efficiency audit had been completed.

Building owners would also be required to use the "ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager"— the Environmental Protection Agency’s online tool for managing building data—to track the total energy use of each non-residential building and obtain an "ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager Energy Performance Rating" for each entire nonresidential building. The owner would then file an Annual Energy Benchmark Summary report ("AEBS") for each covered building with the Department of the Environment. The AEBS would be based on an assessment of the entire non-residential building and related facilities made using Portfolio Manager.

No energy efficiency audit would be required for: (a) a building newly constructed less than five years prior to the date an AEBS was due; (b) a building that received the ENERGY STAR® label from the EPA for at least three of the last five years; or, (c) a building that was certified under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system for Existing Buildings Operation and Maintenance, within the past five years. Owners of financially distressed buildings could apply for extensions of the deadlines for completion of an energy efficiency audit or for submittal of an AEBS.

The Department of the Environment would annually report to the public summary statistics on Citywide energy use in nonresidential buildings and on overall compliance with the Chapter. For individual buildings covered by the ordinance, the department would report whether the building was in compliance with the Chapter, what level of energy audit was required for the building, the date of the most recent audit, and whole-building information on energy use and efficiency.

The ordinance would require building owners to make the Annual Energy Benchmark Summary report available to all tenants occupying the building in order to engage tenants in efforts to save energy.

The ordinance would set a staggered, 3-year schedule for compliance with these new requirements, beginning April 1, 2011.

Violations would be enforced through a system of administrative penalties, after written warning to the building owner.

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