San Francisco Passes Energy Audit Mandate

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San Francisco’s city council has adopted regulations requiring commercial property owners to publish data on the energy performance of their buildings.

The Existing Commercial Building Energy Performance Ordinance, approved by the city’s Board of Supervisors, requires owners of non-residential buildings of 10,000 sq ft or greater to measure and rate the performance of their buildings and publish the results. They will need to benchmark their energy use using a free online tool provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and will need to file annual results with the city, UPI reports.

Owners would have to conduct energy audits every five years.

The regulations are backed by San Francisco mayor Edwin Lee. ”San Francisco needs to increase the energy and resource efficiency of existing buildings if we are going to meet our aggressive greenhouse gas reduction targets,” Mayor Edwin Lee said, quoted by UPI. “This ordinance not only helps educate building owners about what they need to do to save energy and money, but it will also boost our local green jobs economy.”

Owners of commercial buildings across California will soon be required to disclose their property’s energy consumption to buyers, lessees or lenders, by state legislation kicking in at midyear, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

The state also introduced building codes on January 1 of this year that require energy inspections at residential and commercial buildings.

Both sets of state legislation are efforts by California to meet its goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, and to 80 percent of 1990 levels by 2050.