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November 28, 2023

Implementing Building Performance Standards – Going Beyond a Piecemeal Approach

As the climate crisis continues to escalate, building performance standards (BPS) continue to pop up across the country. Guided by local or federal legislation, BPS programs provide states and cities with a powerful solution to meeting their climate goals, achieving energy savings and reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).

In the U.S., 40% of all energy consumption and carbon emissions come from the built environment. BPS policies are designed to reduce the carbon impact of the built environment by requiring existing buildings to meet various energy performance targets. As with any emerging policy, stakeholders are inundated with information and questions regarding implementation and impact. In the case of BPS policies, penalties for noncompliance remain a steadfast motivator for building portfolio managers. For building managers navigating multiple compliance programs – perhaps a city and state program – assessing similarities and aligning on requirements will greatly reduce complexity upon implementation.

Many compliance programs are likely to include similar measurements like Energy Use Index (EUI) and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) reporting and targeting as well as a fine structure for noncompliance. For many building managers hoping for a quick start to compliance, EUI benchmarking is often thought to be the best place to begin. Working through a more traditional piecemeal approach to compliance, building managers may then consider retro commissioning (RCx), investment grade audits (IGA) and the like.

However, while a quick start and avoiding penalties may be top of mind for building owners, a piecemeal approach with independent sale cycles and unbundled services may prove ineffective and costly. Therefore, choosing the right partner – with a robust history supporting clients in achieving compliance with ever-expanding and complicated legislation – can ensure success in developing a holistic energy reduction strategy and timely implementation of prescribed measures. 

For McKinstry and our clients, a holistic approach to compliance includes comprehensive capital planning, robust data collection, bundled services and a strategic compliance implementation plan.

We are committed to eliminating environmental harm by collaborating with clients across the country to develop streamlined compliance roadmaps through our robust suite of services including benchmarking and verification, financial strategy development, implementation and energy management and maintenance. 

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