By Grey Lee
Boston's Mayor Thomas Menino has announced an Energy Disclosure Ordinance.
The establishment of this requirement will “provide information to owners, residents, and prospective buyers and tenants, and, through education and the operations of the market, create incentives to participate in energy efficiency programs.”
Energy efficiency in existing buildings is the single most important component of the City's plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020.
New York, Philadelphia, Seattle, San Francisco, Minneapolis and other cities have enacted energy reporting and
disclosure requirements in their jurisdictions.
Leading by example, Boston would annually disclose its energy and water use in all of its facilities starting with the 2012 building data. In the following years, the ordinance would apply to non-residential buildings greater than 25,000 square feet and residential buildings 25 units or more. The proposed roll out schedule for reporting requirements is as follows:
- Non-residential buildings 50,000 square feet or more in 2014
- Residential buildings with 50 units or more in 2015
- Non-residential buildings 25,000 square feet or more in 2016
- Residential buildings with 25 units or more in 2017
In addition to reporting energy and water use, buildings may be required to conduct energy audits or other evaluations every five years to identify opportunities for energy efficiency investments. Buildings in the top tier of energy performance or already taking significant efficiency actions will be exempted from this requirement.
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions through investments in energy efficiency is the largest component of the Mayor’s Climate Action Plan. Mayor Menino has established Boston as a national leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and promoting a clean energy economy through initiatives such as Renew Boston and the first in the nation's green building standards for private developments. To further inspire action, Mayor Menino has launched Greenovate Boston, a new sustainability movement to ensure a greener, healthier and more prosperous future for the City.