Commercial building energy benchmark standards rely on a tool developed in 2007 by the EPA known as “Portfolio Manager”. The valued “Energy Star” designation is derived from Portfolio Manager calculations. Engineering and Real Estate professionals are trained to use Portfolio Manager to generate benchmark reports as needed. Because of high energy use, space for DATA CENTERS has been excluded in calculating building energy use.

That is about to change.

The EPA has refined the DATA CENTER field in Portfolio Manager to more accurately reflect a buildings energy performance, given the unique power demands of a data center. Because accurate energy information is needed, requirements to “sub-meter” the data center have been introduced. In some cases, this sub-metering already exists as part of the facility, utility upgrades, installed UPS equipment, etc. Existing sub-meters with ancillary loads such as lighting and cooling can be disqualified under certain circumstances. Please note that an installed meter may measure demand (KW) and not cumulative power over time (KWh). KWh figures are needed. When compliant facility sub-meters are not present, they will need to be installed. Buildings lacking sub-meters on their data center will suffer from poor benchmark results and likely lose the Energy Star designation. Building value, lease provisions or other building owner/tenants issues may be impacted.




California is one of a number of jurisdictions which require energy
benchmarks on all buildings over 50,000 sq ft. As of 1/1/11, AB 1103 requires benchmark disclosure to prospective tenants, buyers or lenders. Buildings which benchmark well command higher lease rates, sales prices and lower loan interest rates, reflecting the value of the property and it’s operation costs.



Your clients need guidance on this issue. With an integrated sub-metering system, your firm can offer new value added services to your client base; services surrounding reporting format, facility expansion and integration, highly granular report capabilities, system optimization, wireless communication and data access. Your client can call an electrician and install a simple logger and be compliant, perhaps missing many important data and energy opportunities in the process. By partnering with us, you can extend your services beyond your core strengths, giving your firm a competitive advantage in retaining existing clients and attracting new ones.





The use of estimate figures are permitted until June 7, 2012. As of that date, the building owner will need one full year of verifiable data. Therefore, June 7, 2011 is significant, as it becomes the date at which point accurate and verifiable figures can be used in the calculations. Data centers which lack compliant sub meter capability after June 7, 2011 risk problems related to their Energy Star status, and in California, accurate asset valuation and documentation issues.





With decades of experience in designing and implementing sub-metering plans in mission critical applications, our clients and partners enjoy the benefits of accurate, compliant and expandable solutions delivered on time and within budget. If you are uncertain on how these new requirements impact your operations, contact us for an initial no-cost consultation.

(in CA) Tony Woicekowski (530) 417-4553
(outside CA) James Richmond, CEM, CEA, CMCP (303) 258-7125

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