How Would Portland’s Proposed Energy Policy Affect You?
RECAP BY: Jodi Prentice, Jones Lang LaSalle
The April program was about how the proposed Portland energy policy will affect owners of commercial office buildings. Since the lunch was held, the Portland City Council met on April 8th and passed this policy that will require buildings over 50,000 square feet to track energy usage and report it on an annual basis starting on April 1, 2016 and buildings over 20,000 a year later on April 1, 2017.
Chris Lowen, Northern Region Energy Director for Glumac and Renee Loveland, Sustainability Manager at Gerding Edlen spoke to the group about what this policy will really mean for owners and managers of commercial real estate.
U.S. Energy Consumption by sector can be broken down as follows: Building and Construction Materials 5.9%, Industry 24.4%, Transportation 28% and Building Operations ranking the highest at 41.7% thus the need for Portland wanting to adopt this policy that is already utilized in cities such as Chicago and Los Angeles. Commercial building owners will be required to track and report the energy usage of building over 50,000 RSF (4/1/16 start date) and over 20,000 RSF (4/1/17 start date).
The energy used to power buildings is the largest source of carbon pollution in Portland, similar to a MPG rating for a new car; the energy performance policy would allow potential tenants and owners to have access to important information about building energy performance. Commercial energy reporting policies in 10 other U.S. cities have proven to motivate investment in efficiency improvements that save money and reduce carbon emissions.
The Energy Performance Reporting Policy would require commercial buildings to track energy performance with a free online tool called ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and report energy use information to the City of Portland on an annual basis. There are nearly 5,000 commercial buildings in Portland and fewer than 100 claim ENERGY STAR certification.
“The proposed policy will build awareness in the commercial building sector about energy performance,” said Bureau of Planning and Sustainability Director Susan Anderson. “Energy-efficient buildings are a win for the building owner, the tenant and for Portland’s carbon reduction goals.”