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ENERGY STAR Updates Coming in August 2018


Using a scale of 1 – 100, ENERGY STAR scores help to provide a quick understanding of how well a building is performing, where a score of 50 represents an average energy performance nationally and a score of 75 or higher proves top performance and possibly eligible for ENERGY STAR Certification. Because these ENERGY STAR scores are so fundamental in identifying and recognizing high-performing buildings, it's important to be aware of changes and updates made to the scoring system.

What Are the ENERGY STAR Score Updates?

ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager uses market data from the Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS) to base their scoring. Since 2009, scoring has been based off of CBECS 2003 data, but on August 26, 2018 the EPA will begin using the CBECS 2012 data.

Additional updates made in August include:

  • Data center estimates: For smaller data centers within another property type that are difficult to measure IT energy use, there is now an option to use estimated energy use.

  • Source energy factor: A new (and lower) national source electric factor will be used to "level the playing field" for different fuel types.

How Does the Update Affect Me?

With nine years since the last update, this most recent market data has shown that U.S. buildings had an overall improvement in their energy performance. Therefore, the updated metrics on ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager will most likely cause ENERGY STAR scores to go down.

Images shows how scores will be updated according to building type by ENERGY STAR.

If you are interested in learning more, visit the ENERGY STAR website for details and updates.

How Can I Prepare?

1) Download your ENERGY STAR Scores and Data from Portfolio Manager Before the Baseline Change on August 26, 2018.

Historical scores will be updated across all time periods with the new baseline, but luckily prior certifications will not be overturned.

The following reports may be helpful: ENERGY

  • “Performance Highlight” Report (for a portfolio-level, multi-year summary)

  • Statement of Energy Performance (for a building-level, 12-month performance period)

2) Apply for ENERGY STAR Certifications Now Before the Score Potentially Drops!

As applicable if your buildings are certified by July 26, your buildings will be scored using the existing baseline regardless of the certification’s ending date. Applications received between July 26 – August 26 are not guaranteed to be accepted and approved before the scoring update.

We strongly recommend beginning or expediting your ENERGY STAR certification process, including scheduling site visits to give enough time to complete assessments prior to the deadline.

3) Keep Improving Your Score!

Since the market has been improving overall, you'll need to get ahead of the game with implementing more efficiency measures to keep your score at the top. Energy Audits can help you understand your energy consumption and identify the right measures to implement, whether it be as simple as switching to LED's or even replacing and optimizing old building systems. Innovation is key to keeping pace with the ever-changing market, and we're here to help!

Getting ahead of these changes is key to having the best portfolio possible. Please don’t hesitate to contact us about how we can assist with either ensuring your eligible properties receive the 2018 ENERGY STAR certification prior to the upcoming deadline or just providing additional technical services to help keep your ENERGY STAR scores up!


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