BuildingRating

Sharing Transparency for a More Efficient Future

San Francisco

San Francisco, California, photo by Andrew Zarivny
Policy Description:

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously passed the Existing Commercial Buildings Energy Performance Ordinance in Feb. 2011. The ordinance requires annual benchmarking, periodic energy audits and the public availability of benchmarking information for nonresidential and public buildings. It augments California law AB 802 which enacted a benchmarking and transparency program for non-residential and multifamily buildings in 2015. The ordinance is based on proposals by the Task Force on Existing Commercial Buildings, convened in 2009 by Mayor Gavin Newsome to develop and recommend actions to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions, enhance electricity reliability and improve the competitiveness of commercial buildings in San Francisco. The Task Force included local commercial real estate owners, building operators, green building consultants, utilities and banks, and was advised by city and state policymakers. Non-residential buildings are to report benchmarking scores to the San Francisco Department of Environment (SFDOE) in the form of an Annual Energy Benchmark Summary. Annual reporting of benchmarking scores will occur on April 1st each year after the initial reporting deadline. The very first AEBS score was not made publicly available to give owners a chance to understand the process and improve performance.

Enacted Date:
2011
Authority in Charge:
San Francisco Department of Environment
Tool Name:
ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager
Building Types Affected Size Compliance Deadline
Non-Residential Greater Than or Equal To 50,000 Sq. Feet 2011-10-01
Non-Residential Greater Than or Equal To 25,000 Sq. Feet 2012-04-01
Non-Residential Greater Than or Equal To 10,000 Sq. Feet 2013-04-01
Public/Government Greater Than or Equal To 50,000 Sq. Feet 2011-10-01
Public/Government Greater Than or Equal To 25,000 Sq. Feet 2012-04-01
Public/Government Greater Than or Equal To 10,000 Sq. Feet 2013-04-01
Exemptions:
Exemptions: New buildings with Certificate of Occupancy from the Dept. of Building Inspection dated less than 2 years prior to benchmarking due date; Unoccupied buildings: less than 1 full-time equivalent occupant for previous calendar year The city took the initiative to benchmark and disclose the energy use of its municipal buildings. The city's first report reveals municipal buildings' energy use for calendar year 2011.
Number of Buildings Affected:
2,312
Floor Area Affected:
203,000,000 Sq. Feet
Transparency:
Required Transparency:
Yes
Transparency Method:
Public Website
Recipients:
Tenants
Transparency Trigger:
Date Certain
Frequency:
Annually
Reporting:
Required Reporting:
Yes
Reporting Trigger:
Date Certain
Reporting Frequency:
Annually

Utility Requirements/Support:

Utility Requirements/Support:
Yes
Notes:
Pacific Gas & Electric, along with other serving utilities, is required by California's state law AB802 to aggregate and provide data for buildings that meet the state's threshold requirements of three or more accounts for non-residential buildings or five or more accounts if any residential accounts are present.

Verification:

Verification:
No

Compliance:

Compliance Enforcement:
Yes
Penalties for Non-Compliance:
Yes
Description:
Warning, then public notice, then fine
Compliance Rate (Based on Building Area):
82% (2013)
Additional Program Information:
Audits:
Yes
ASHRAE Level 2 for buildings >= 50,000 Sq. Feet ASHRAE Level 1 for buildings 10,000 - 49,999 Sq. Feet Audits due every 5 years Performance Exemptions: Energy Star Certification; EUI 25% better than similar building average; Improvement by 15%; LEED EBOM
Retrocommissioning:
Yes
Owners may comply by conducting retrocommissioning instead of an energy audit every 5 years.
Water Use Tracking:
No