January 29, 2015 | IMT


Katie Weeks, Institute for Market Transformation, 202-525-2883, x306 / katie.weeks@imt.org


WASHINGTON, DC – Large, privately owned commercial buildings in the District of Columbia are more energy efficient than national peers, according to data published yesterday by the District of Columbia Department of the Environment (DDOE). The data, which includes the 2013 energy and water performance of more than 700 privately owned large buildings, was gathered and released as required by the Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008, the District’s mandatory energy benchmarking law. This year’s data covers privately owned commercial and multifamily buildings over 100,000 square feet.

In releasing the data, DDOE noted that its private commercial buildings have a median ENERGY STAR score of 74 out of 100—meaning that these buildings perform better than 74 percent of similar buildings nationwide. In addition, the data shows an increase in efficiency from 2012 to 2013, with weather-normalized source energy use for the buildings (meaning energy use accounting for weather impacts and fuel differences) decreasing by 3 percent in one year.

The Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) assisted with compliance efforts as a teaming partner of the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU) and its market transformation initiatives, which included helping to operate a Benchmarking Help Center to assist building owners and managers in complying with the District’s benchmarking requirements. To date, more than 70 percent of the buildings required to report energy benchmarking data to the DDOE have done so.

In response to the publication of the DC data, IMT Executive Director Cliff Majersik released the following statement:

“Benchmarking building energy use is one of the most effective ways to increase efficiency as it allows building owners and operators to get a better understanding of how their buildings use energy, with an eye to improving efficiency and profitability by reducing energy waste. This creates a virtuous and continuous cycle of improvement. The District’s new benchmarking data supports this theory, with large privately owned buildings that track their energy use reporting increasing energy savings.

The District of Columbia was the first jurisdiction in the nation to require public disclosure of energy benchmarking results for private buildings. This continued transparency allows policymakers to better target programs and policies to reduce energy waste and building tenants to respond to building performance by rewarding more efficient buildings with higher occupancy and faster lease-up times.”

The District’s new energy and benchmarking data can be downloaded at DDOE’s website, ddoe.dc.gov/energybenchmarking. In addition, a more detailed analysis of the 2013 performance data will be included in an upcoming Green Building Report from the District.

Information on the District’s benchmarking policy is also available at BuildingRating.org, a website maintained by IMT that provides information on energy and water benchmarking policies and programs around the world. Site visitors can search for benchmarking program information by city, U.S. county, U.S. state, or country, and can use the site’s policy comparison tool to identify and examine similarities and differences among various benchmarking policies.


ABOUT IMT: The Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization promoting energy efficiency, green building, and environmental protection in the United States and abroad. IMT's work addresses market failures that inhibit investment in energy efficiency and sustainability in the building sector. For more information, visit imt.org.


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