Buildings are the largest source of carbon emissions in Portland. The purpose of the policy is to provide information to potential tenants and owners about building energy performance and motivate investment in energy efficiency improvements that reduce energy use and carbon emissions.
Publicly reporting energy use provides transparency and encourages competition among building owners and managers to improve efficiency. In addition, building performance data is useful to current and prospective tenants and companies that provide energy efficiency services.
The proposed energy performance reporting policy affects commercial buildings that are at least 20,000 square feet. Commercial uses include offices, retail space, grocery stores, hotels, sports facilities, government, higher education, and health care facilities. Commercial uses do not include residential, places of worship, industrial, warehouses, and primary and secondary schools.
April 22, 2016 is the initial due date for commercial buildings 50,000 square feet and larger to submit annual energy performance information for the 2015 calendar year. For commercial buildings from 20,000 to 50,000 square feet, April 22, 2017 is the initial due date to submit energy performance information for the 2016 calendar year. Reports on energy use during the previous calendar year will be due each April 22 thereafter.
To comply with the policy, track your building’s energy consumption using the free ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager tool and report benchmarking information (energy use intensity, ENERGY STAR score and greenhouse gas emissions) by April 22nd of the appropriate calendar year. The City will send detailed instructions to each affected property owner.
To minimize compliance costs for building owners and managers, the City will not require verification by a Professional Engineer or Architect. To ensure accuracy and compliance, the City will review reported information for errors and randomly select buildings annually to check data quality.
More information on Portfolio Manager can be found at: http://www.energystar.gov/buildings/facility-owners-and-managers/existing-buildings/use-portfolio-manager.
The City and its partners will conduct ENERGY STAR portfolio manager workshops and training sessions for building owners and managers before the reporting deadline.
The City of Portland will publish building information including status of compliance with the policy, building gross square footage, building type, energy use intensity (kbtu/gross sq ft), ENERGY STAR score and carbon emissions.
If a building contains at least 20,000 square feet of space predominantly used for commercial purposes, it must comply with the policy.
The policy contains a provision that requires tenants to provide utility information to the building owner upon request.
No. This policy only requires commercial buildings more than 20,000 square feet to track energy use annually and report performance to the City.
My building has a high occupancy rate, operates for long hours or includes an energy-intensive user. Will this result in a lower ENERGY STAR score?
The ENERGY STAR portfolio manager system allows you to include information such as building age, operating hours, workers per square foot, occupancy rates, and space usage. ENERGY STAR scoring models assume buildings with higher intensities of activities use more energy. More intense uses do not necessarily result in lower scores.
What about historic buildings and other older buildings that were built with older systems? Won’t the policy penalize these building owners?
From the experience in other cities with similar policies, older buildings, on the whole, tend to perform better than newer buildings on energy use intensity and benchmarking score. Many factors contribute to a building’s efficiency, such as the amount of windows, thickness of walls, and how the building is operated.
Approximately 1,000 commercial buildings will be affected by this policy, covering nearly 80 percent of the commercial square footage in Portland, including local government-owned buildings.
The City will recognize the highest performing buildings through events, media, websites, case studies and other communication strategies.