The state of Washington and the City of Seattle are among the pioneers in requiring that building owners track and report energy performance — known as benchmarking — and disclose that data to potential buyers, renters or lenders. When the state and the city adopted their benchmarking requirements in 2009 and 2010, respectively, only Austin, New York City and the state of California had similar policies in place. Since then, several more cities and states around the country have jumped on the bandwagon. While benchmarking is considered an important tool in encouraging energy efficiency, it also can present traps for the unwary.
Both the state and city requirements were phased in, but we are now in full implementation at both levels. Under the Washington law, all state government buildings and commercial buildings greater than 10,000 square feet are required to collect energy consumption data. The City of Seattle ordinance requires that all nonresidential and multifamily buildings greater than 20,000 square feet within the city limits must report their energy benchmarking data. Manufacturing or industrial buildings in Seattle are exempt from the requirements of the ordinance, as are multiple buildings served by a single utility meter. In total, some 3,750 buildings in Seattle now fall within the reporting requirement.
Originally published in Seattle Business magazine on November 1, 2013.
Please see full alert below for more information.
Firefox recommends the PDF Plugin for Mac OS X for viewing PDF documents in your browser.
We can also show you Legal Updates using the Google Viewer; however, you will need to be logged into Google Docs to view them.
Please choose one of the above to proceed!
LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.