Energy Consumption Disclosures and Benchmarking
States can encourage building owners to improve the efficiency of their buildings by making energy performance visible to the purchasers, tenants and the public through the use of benchmarking and disclosure policies. Energy is usually a significant expenditure for commercial buildings and homes and most building owners don’t have visibility of where and how a facility’s energy is consumed. The enhanced awareness created by benchmarking helps owners and operators identify opportunities for improving efficiency and reducing costs. Disclosure requirements prior to sale or lease help purchasers and lessors make more informed decisions about the total cost of owning a home, operating a building or leasing property.
At least 10 states and Washington, D.C., require building owners by statute to benchmark, report energy consumption data or disclose such information prior to sale. While some states implement benchmarking or disclosure policies through regulation or executive order, we’re highlighting states that have enacted legislation on the topic.
State law requires utilities to deliver energy benchmarking data to nonresidential buildings as well as nonresidential and residential buildings with five or more utility accounts. Additionally, the state energy commission is tasked with establishing energy benchmarking regulations and requirements related to public disclosure of energy consumption data. Cal. Pub. Res. § 25402.10.
State law also directs the energy commission to establish a statewide home energy rating program that includes labeling procedures. Cal. Pub. Res. Code § 25943.
District of Columbia
District law requires the Department of Energy and Environment to develop data verification and reporting requirements in implementing the performance-based building energy efficiency standards described in the performance-based standards section. D.C. Code § 8-1772.21. District law also requires annual energy benchmarking for existing commercial buildings. D.C. Code § 6-1451.03. To facilitate energy benchmarking requirements, utilities are also statutorily required to take steps to ensure that aggregated monthly energy consumption data is readily accessible to building owners. D.C. Code § 8-1774.07. The District discloses or makes publicly available the benchmarking data on an annual basis.
The state implements an energy rating system program for all public, commercial and residential buildings. Prospective buyers are entitled to receive information regarding the option for an energy efficiency rating prior to executing the contract for sale. The energy rating system is designed to provide a reliable evaluation of energy consumption and comparison to similar buildings. Fla. Stat. Ann. § 553.990 et seq.
State law requires property owners to share information about building electricity consumption costs prior to sale or lease. Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 508D-10.5.
State law requires the seller of certain new residential buildings to disclose to a prospective buyer information regarding the building’s energy efficiency prior to the execution of the contract for sale. Kan. Stat. Ann. § 66-1228.
Under state law, prospective tenants responsible for paying utility bills have a right to information related to the costs of energy consumption for the previous 12-month period. Upon the request of the lessee, a lessor must provide an energy efficiency disclosure statement. Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. 14 § 6030-C. Additionally, in 2007, the state enacted legislation directing the technical buildings codes and standards board to adopt rules relating to energy performance rating to generate consumer information labels for marketing and sale of residential and commercial buildings. Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. 10 § 9722.
State law requires owners and operators of commercial buildings over 25,000 square feet to benchmark energy and water usage no later than 2023. N.J. Stat. Ann. 48:3-87.10.
Requires sellers of single family or multifamily residential buildings to disclose information regarding building energy efficiency prior to executing the contract for sale. S.D. Cod. Laws § 11-10-8.
The state recently enacted legislation requiring the state office of energy development to establish rules for a home energy performance rating system to facilitate a voluntary home energy information pilot program designed to increase consumer awareness about home energy efficiency. HB 235 (2020).
State law requires utilities to provide monthly aggregated energy usage data to multiunit building owners upon their request for the purposes of energy benchmarking or creating an energy labeling program. 30 V.S.A. § 63.
The state recently enacted legislation adding energy efficiency data to the required disclosures provided to a buyer of a residential property. SB 628 (2020); HB 518 (2020).
State law requires that nonresidential building owners disclose to prospective lessees, buyers or lenders energy benchmarking data from the previous 12-month period. Wash. Rev. Code 19.27A.170. Additionally, under the state’s recently enacted energy performance standards for commercial buildings, building owners are required to demonstrate compliance with energy use intensity targets. Wash. Rev. Code 19.27A.210.