Alert: April 1st Deadline for D.C. Energy Benchmarking Law Compliance

March 26, 2014

Starting next week, owners of DC buildings containing over 50,000 gross square feet must submit information on the energy and water usage of those buildings to the District in accordance with the city's Energy Benchmarking law. Owners of larger buildings previously had to report this information, and will have to submit their annual updates to the District on April 1. The law applies to both residential and non-residential buildings, and includes condominium buildings. The District can fine building owners who do not comply with the law up to $100 per day of non-compliance.  

The annual reporting under the law is made through the EPA Energy Star Portfolio Manager tool, a free software package that is accessed through the DC Department of the Environment website. While the District maintains that building owners should be able to complete the process without outside assistance, the process requires collecting and inputting certain technical information. Also, some owners may need to obtain information from their commercial tenants. The Portfolio Manager rates the building's energy usage on a 1 to 100 scale. A score of 50 means that the building is performing at the national average for that particular type of building and a score of 75 means that the building is performing in the top 25th percentile nationwide.

The District makes the benchmarking data publicly available following the second year of reported data. Information on larger buildings' 2011 and 2012 energy usage was made public by the District in February, 2014. In response, a number of newspapers ran articles highlighting the city's most energy efficient, and least energy efficient, commercial buildings.

If your building is larger than 50,000 square feet, the District is expecting a benchmarking report by April 1, 2014. If you have any questions about whether the law applies to your building, or have questions about benchmarking requirements, please contact us:

James B. Witkin at jwitkin@linowes-law.com or 301-961-5189 

Steven L. Dube at sdube@linowes-law.com or 301-961-5209 

Brian D. Bichy at bbichy@linowes-law.com or 301-961-5253 

William W. Riggins at wriggins@linowes-law.com or 301-961-5162  

Judyann M. Lee at jlee@linowes-law.com or 301-961-5234





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