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  • Daniel Petersen

Energy Benchmarking - A Snapshot of Philadelphia's Sustainability

Updated: Aug 29, 2023

Did you know that the City of Philadelphia requires annual energy benchmarking for large non-residential buildings? Philadelphia’s city council passed the Energy Benchmarking and Disclosure Law in 2012, requiring buildings larger than 50,000 square feet to report yearly energy and water usage using EnergyStar’s Portfolio Manager Tool, a free tool provided by the US EPA. The next deadline to report is June 30th 2018!

So what is energy benchmarking and why is it important? Energy benchmarking is a process of comparing performance metrics among buildings of similar size and purpose. Creating standard performance metrics is critical to getting a baseline of energy performance for your building and seeing how you stack up against the competition. Based on this information, building owners can get a better picture of energy and water usage in their facility, and areas for improvement. Studies have shown that energy benchmarking allows owners and managers to identify energy saving opportunities. This can be a great money saving tool for building owners who choose to reduce their usage, and a great draw for tenants and financiers looking for greener buildings.

Since 2012, 90 percent of required buildings have started to report their usage, comprising more than 30 percent of the square footage of commercial real estate in Philadelphia. While the median EnergyStar score was 60 in 2015, exceeding the national average, we still fall short of average scores in other similar cities with mandatory reporting. What does this imply? The large buildings in Philadelphia are reporting usage but not doing enough to reduce that usage.

Here at EES we believe in Mayor Kenney’s goal of reducing carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050. This all starts with the larger buildings in the City getting a clear picture of their energy and water performance. We have been providing benchmarking services for our clients since 2013, one of the many Sustainability Consulting Services we offer. Give us a call today for help with benchmarking and reporting using EnergyStar’s Portfolio Manager before the June 30th deadline.



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