Posts tagged ‘benchmarking’

Complying with LL84: Part Five – Selecting a benchmarking compliance service

The Network has been looking into what it takes to comply with Local Law 84, a new NYC regulation requiring owners to benchmark their buildings that are over 50,000 square feet.  View our previous coverage of LL84 , or read on for a list of questions you should ask when deciding on a company to help you comply with LL84.

Part Five:  Questions to consider when selecting a benchmarking compliance service

There are a number of companies that offer professional assistance to comply with LL84. Though they offer a wide variety of services, one common feature is that most companies view benchmarking as a first step on a long-term, necessary journey toward efficient buildings. Third-party assistance is an occasion to obtain expert opinion on your buildings’ performance, rather than an excuse to put the assignment in someone else’s hands and not be involved in the process.  (In addition, we suggest that wherever possible, supportive housing providers benchmark, track and evaluate energy usage in all of their buildings – not just those that are covered by LL84.)

As you speak with benchmarking providers, you should consider several questions: (more…)

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May 13, 2011 at 1:19 pm Leave a comment

Complying with LL84: Part Four – Benchmarking compliance services

The Network has been looking into what it takes to comply with Local Law 84, a new NYC regulation requiring owners to benchmark their buildings that are over 50,000 square feet.  View our previous coverage of LL84 , or read on to learn about some of the companies that can help you to comply and to get the most out of benchmarking.

Part Four: Benchmarking compliance services

We have researched a few companies that offer benchmarking services to get an idea of the types of services provided. The inclusion of these firms is not an endorsement and there are many reputable companies not covered here.  Let us know if you are familiar with a company that we have not listed here  – or share your experience if you have already engaged a service.  It will help the Network to expand our information base.   Lastly, if you have questions about any of these services, please leave us a comment or email the Green Housing Initiative – Ariel Krasnow, Johanna Walczyk or Sally Larsen. Company descriptions start after the jump! (more…)

May 5, 2011 at 1:09 pm Leave a comment

Complying with LL84: Part Three – Issues to consider when complying on your own

The Network has been looking into what it takes to comply with Local Law 84, a new NYC regulation requiring owners to benchmark their buildings that are over 50,000 square feet.  View our previous coverage of LL84 , or read on for some important tips that you should keep in mind if you decide to comply without the help of a consultant.

Part Three: Issues to consider when complying on your own

Benchmarking on your own will help you get to know your building better, but may also present some challenges. The rules are complicated and the software tool is not user-friendly, which can make complying difficult.

EPA’s Portfolio Manager (PM) tool was designed as a national voluntary energy assessment tool in concert with the Energy Star program. It was not designed for benchmarking New York City multi-family buildings. As a result, its correct use is not always an intuitive process. NYC has proposed rules for LL84 that must be read and followed in addition to the general instructions, but that are not included or prompted by the Portfolio Manager tool (though the rules are not finalized, building owners should comply as though they will be finalized as-is). Here are some of the major issues to keep in mind as you benchmark, but it is by no means a comprehensive list, and is no substitute for reading the proposed rule amendments.

Add your block and lot number

 When you “add a property” in PM, a Notes section will be created for your building. Though the PM tool says that adding notes here is optional, under LL84 you must enter your building block and lot number. (more…)

April 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm

Complying with LL84: Part Two – Benchmarking on your own

The Network has been looking into what it takes to comply with Local Law 84, a new NYC regulation requiring owners to benchmark their buildings that are over 50,000 square feet. Benchmarking is a great way to learn more about your building and alert you to energy waste, but the process can be complex. View our previous coverage of LL84 , or read on to learn the basics of complying with the law without using a consultant – how to determine whether you have the capacity to comply in-house, what challenges you  might run into and what trainings and resources exist to help you along the way.

Part Two: Benchmarking on your own

The Greener, Greater Buildings Plan specifies that benchmarking must be done using the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Portfolio Manager, an online tool that lets owners fill in information about their buildings – including utility bill data and characteristics of the building. To comply with LL84, you must access the Portfolio Manager tool through a special portal from the NYC Department of Buildings website. That way, the submitted building information will be forwarded to the City for compliance. You will also be sent a report based on your building utility usage and characteristics; the report will “normalize” your building’s energy use to account for its size and climate. (more…)

April 21, 2011 at 12:58 pm Leave a comment

Benchmarking your Multi-family Building

As we mentioned a few months ago, some multi-family buildings in NYC will soon be subject to new regulations. As part of the Mayor’s PlaNYC 2030 program, buildings over 50,000 sqaure feet will soon need to conduct annual benchmarks of their current energy use. The Network Green Housing Initiative realizes that complying with Local Law 84 may be difficult for some of our members, so we’ve done some research on how to comply, who can help you and challenges to look out for. Over the next couple of weeks we will be posting our findings here in sections. Please keep in mind that our research is not comprehensive; it should be regarded as a helpful resource for getting started, not a definitive guide to the law.

Also, although you’ll note that the effective deadline for compliance is now August 1, 2011, we strongly advise you to begin the process now. There are several points along the way at which you might get delayed or stuck, and time delays will be longer the closer to the deadline you get.

Part One: Introduction to LL84

In December 2009, Mayor Bloomberg signed into law the Greener, Greater Buildings Plan for New York City. One component of the legislation requires that owners of buildings over 50,000 square feet complete a benchmarking assessment for each of those buildings by May 1, 2011.  On March 21st, the city announced a grace period for benchmarking penalties until August 1st, effectively extending the deadline.  You are still encouraged to start the benchmarking process as soon as possible.   After August 1st a fine of $500 will be assessed for every quarter that building owners do not comply. (more…)

April 19, 2011 at 5:29 pm Leave a comment

Webinar on Benchmarking for Multi-Family Buildings

As we wrote yesterday, the NYC Greener, Greater Building Plan will soon require owners to “benchmark” their large buildings, measuring their performance against similar buildings in the City. One helpful tool for determining your benchmark is the U.S. EPA’s Portfolio Manager, which can help you track your utility consumption and monitor your costs.

On Wednesday, February 9, the EPA will be holding a webinar training seminar on Portfolio Manager. It will cover everything from creating a user account to tracking your greenhouse gas emissions. Building owners and property managers would benefit from this seminar. You can log on to the training right from your computer – or, if you have a time conflict, you can watch a recording of the session afterward. Register here.

January 27, 2011 at 1:36 pm Leave a comment

Upcoming Workshop on NYC’s New Building Laws

New York City buildings will soon face new regulations. As part of the Mayor’s PlaNYC 2030 emissions reduction program, buildings over 50,000 square feet will soon need to conduct annual benchmarks of their current energy use – this means they will have their energy efficiency measured and compared to other, similar buildings in New York City. Later, they will need to get audits and upgrades. Read more about the  laws and the Greener, Greater Buildings Plan here.

The new rules are an opportunity for affordable housing owners to make an honest assessment of their buildings’ performance relative to each other and to the city’s other buildings. When you know which of your buildings are the least efficient, you can direct your investments where they will create the most savings.

But there is much to learn about the laws – who do they cover? What do they require? What is the timeline for action? These questions and more will be addressed in a workshop hosted by the Supportive Housing Network and its partners on February 2. The workshop, part of the Managing Lean and Green series for owners and managers of affordable multi-family housing, will bring buildings experts together to discuss:

    •   The NYC Greener Greater Buildings Laws; context and goals
    •   Building Performance: Benchmarking and evaluation programs
    •   Impact and intent of the laws on building efficiency, health and safety
    •   Available funding to help offset the costs of compliance

Speakers will include:

    • Deborah F. Taylor, AIA, LEED AP, Chief Sustainability Office, New York City Department of Buildings
    •   Erica Brabon, Project Manager, Steven Winter Associates
    •   Valerie Corbett, President of Intelligreen Partners, LLC, on behalf of the Urban Green Council

We think this workshop will be useful not only for those who own or manage buildings that will be affected by the laws, but also for those with smaller buildings. The discussion will explore why every building would benefit from being benchmarked, and how owners can find funding to achieve this goal.

Learn more and register for the workshop here!

January 26, 2011 at 10:49 am Leave a comment


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