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District Releases New, Interactive Energy Benchmarking Map

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Four Years of DC Building Energy and Water Performance Data Now Available

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIASeptember 28, 2017 – Today, the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) published the annual disclosure of energy and water consumption of large commercial and multifamily buildings, as required by the city’s mandatory energy benchmarking law. The disclosure, which reflects performance during the 2016 calendar year, covers private buildings over 50,000 square feet and District-owned buildings over 10,000 square feet. This disclosure includes data on over 1,500 buildings, representing over 280 million square feet.

The District was the first jurisdiction in the country to require private buildings to measure and report their energy performance, and has been publicly disclosing this data for several years now. This year’s disclosure is particularly unique due to the addition EnergyBenchmarkingDC.org, an interactive mapping tool that visually displays all of the benchmarking data for calendar years 2013-2016. Users can search for specific buildings by address, or use the interactive filters to look at buildings by Ward, property type, age, energy performance, water performance, and greenhouse gas emissions. The map also includes answers to frequently asked questions, a glossary of terms, and direct links to the raw benchmarking data that can be downloaded from the DOEE website.

An analysis of the 2013-2016 reported data indicates that:

  • DC commercial buildings continue to be exceptionally efficient. The median reported ENERGY STAR score for private commercial buildings in calendar year 2016 was 74 out of 100—24 points higher than the national median score of 50.
  • Consistency is key. For the 700 private buildings that consistently submitted benchmarking reports to DOEE from 2013 to 2016, overall median weather-normalized site Energy Use Intensity (EUI) decreased by 4.5% and median ENERGY STAR scores increased by 4 points, from 70 to 74. Privately-owned office buildings saw an energy use decrease of 5.7% over this time period, while privately-owned multifamily properties saw a drop of 5%.
  • DC Government is leading the way. District-owned properties that reported data every year, from 2013 to 2016, saw a, 8.6% drop in site energy use intensity, with DC Public Schools seeing a drop of 8% and District public housing buildings seeing a drop of over 9% over that time period.

“Our new interactive benchmarking tool will help make the energy and water performance of our largest buildings come alive for District residents,” said DOEE Director Tommy Wells, noting the importance of moving the benchmarking data to a more dynamic format. “It is a smart business practice for building owners to track and report their energy usage consistently, and this map takes us a step further in making this information more relevant, valuable, and accessible to building owners, policymakers, and other members of the general public.”

To develop EnergyBenchmarkingDC.org, DOEE contracted with Stamen, a data visualization and map design studio who also developed the interactive energy benchmarking maps for Chicago and Seattle. The District’s map is the first map of its kind to display energy and water performance data for four separate calendar years, with filtering options for 15 distinct metrics.