Large Building Owners to Submit Benchmarking Data by May 1
Local Law 84 (LL84) requires owners of large buildings to annually measure their energy and water consumption in a process called benchmarking. LL84 standardizes this process by requiring building owners to enter their annual energy and water use in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) online tool, ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, and use the tool to submit data to the city. Building owners are subject to a penalty if usage data isn’t submitted by May 1 every year.
The applicable large buildings include private sector buildings that are larger than 50,000 square feet, and two or more private sector buildings on a single lot that are larger than 100,000 square feet.
Violations for Failed Compliance
Once you’ve submitted a satisfactory report by the deadline, there’s no additional responsibility until the following year. If you don’t submit a report by May 1, you may aim for the next quarterly deadline of Aug. 1. Subsequent deadlines are Nov. 1 and Feb. 1 of the following year.
The Department of Buildings (DOB) is authorized to issue violations for any property on the Covered Buildings list that hasn’t provided a benchmarking report by the May 1 deadline. Failure to benchmark will result in a violation and a penalty of $500. Continued failure to benchmark by subsequent deadlines of Aug. 1, Nov. 1, and Feb. 1 will result in additional violations on a quarterly basis and a penalty of $500 per quarter with a maximum of $2,000 per year.
Take Four Compliance Steps
LL84 gives building owners information about a building’s energy and water consumption compared to similar buildings, and tracks progress year over year to help in energy-efficiency planning. LL84’s annual benchmarking process consists of four steps:
Step #1: Check the Covered Building List for your property(ies) every year. A list of covered buildings can be found at https://www1.nyc.gov/html/gbee/downloads/pdf/2019%20LL87%20CBL%20Final.pdf. If your property is listed, you’re required to comply. If you believe your property should not be on the list, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information: the building(s) borough, block, and lot numbers; contact name; contact email address or telephone number; and reason for dispute with your correct square footage.
Your property’s status can change from year to year, so be sure to review the newest Covered Buildings List every year.
Step #2: Collect whole building energy data (and water data, if eligible) from utilities. To obtain whole building energy consumption data for benchmarking, you’ll need to obtain tenant consumption data in addition to base building data. If your property isn’t master-metered, or you don’t have whole building energy consumption data, the best way to acquire this information is to request it directly from the utilities.
For water data, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) provides all water consumption information to properties eligible and covered under LL84. Only covered properties that have had an Automatic Meter Reader (AMR) installed for at least the entire calendar year will be required to benchmark their water consumption.
Building owners that benchmarked their data prior to 2019 by registering in Portfolio Manager for automatic DEP water consumption data uploading don’t need to re-register this year. Water consumption data for those properties will be automatically uploaded for every year moving forward. All inquiries about water benchmarking should be directed to DEP at email@example.com.
Step #3: Measure and record your energy and water usage in Portfolio Manager. If you’re unfamiliar with using Portfolio Manager, you can study training materials found at www.energystar.gov/buildings/training.
Step #4: Submit usage data to the city by May 1 through Portfolio Manager. To complete the benchmarking process, the city’s reporting template must be used in Portfolio Manager to share your data with the city. For help with benchmarking submissions, you can contact the NYC Benchmarking Help Center by visiting https://www1.nyc.gov/html/gbee/html/plan/ll84_help_center.shtml, sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 212-566-LL84 (212-566-5584).