Building energy benchmarking is a proven strategy for helping measure and reduce a building’s energy use. More information on a building’s energy use—and how it compares to other similar buildings—allows businesses to make their own informed decisions on how to save on energy costs and increase efficiency. The data from benchmarking helps building owners and managers prioritize and verify the effectiveness of energy efficiency retrofits, and it helps investors and tenants find the most cost-effective buildings to invest in or lease. In other words, the data from benchmarking helps businesses make better and smarter investment decisions.
Benchmarking is free using Energy Star Portfolio Manager, and requires only a few hours upfront to set up plus part of an hour annually to update and review the data.
A benchmarking, transparency, and tune-up policy is one of the top actions a city, county, or state can take to support businesses within its border by lowering energy costs in owned and leased space. These ordinances help large buildings to benchmark and help share the energy scores with potential investors and tenants. In the Southwest, Boulder passed its Building Performance Ordinance in 2015, Denver passed it Energize Denver ordinance in 2016, and several others are considering similar benchmarking and transparency policies.