Benchmarking Top Banner

Contact the Benchmarking Help Desk

Benchmarking Help Desk  

Direct: 
(614) 724-1277
[email protected]

Sign Up for Virtual Office Hours:

Sign up for a phone or video appointment during Virtual Office hours.


Sign up for Digital Contact
Update your contact information in the Building Contact Form to claim your building and receive email notifications instead of paper mail notifications, as well as staying up to date with the latest resources, news, and assistance.


Have a Question?
Take a look at our FAQ for answers to the most common benchmarking questions. If you don't see an answer to your question reach out to the Benchmarking Help Desk


Exemptions: 
If your building is on the covered buildings list and it meets the Exemption Criteria outlined within the Ordinance Language, then you can  File an Exemption Request. If approved, an exemption is only valid for a single reporting cycle.


Learn more about Columbus' Commitment to Sustainability:

Sustainable Columbus

Sustainable COlumbus Climate Action Plan

Sustainable Steps

GreenSpot

Energy & Water Benchmarking Ordinance

 

The City of Columbus' Energy & Water Benchmarking and Transparency Ordinance (Ordinance 0452-2020) requires commercial and multi-family building owners and managers of buildings 50,000 square feet and larger to track (or “benchmark”) their electricity, gas, and water use. This data is reported annually to the city through the U.S. EPA's ENERGY STAR(R) Portfolio Manager(R) tool. *Please note that reporting of water data is voluntary in 2021 and will be required starting in 2022.

Benchmarking is an easy and effective way to measure and manage a building's energy and water usage. The Energy and Water Benchmarking and Transparency Ordinance is designed to guide Columbus building owners and managers in starting this process. Compliance with this ordinance will help to reach Mayor Ginther's ambitious pledge to make Columbus a carbon neutral community by 2050.  Learn more about Columbus' Climate Action Plan.

The City of Columbus is committed to creating an equitable and climate-ready future. Additional resources are available to support non-profit, faith-based, and affordable housing organizations, as well as building owners in historically disenfranchised neighborhoods. Please reach out directly to the Benchmarking Help Desk to learn more.

In the inaugural year of the Benchmarking Ordinance, only buildings 100,000 square feet and larger will be required to submit data. This will be completed in two phases detailed below. In 2022 the threshold to report will drop to include buildings 50,000 square feet and larger.

Phase One: Owners and managers of buildings 100,000 square feet and larger are required to create an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account and acquire their Columbus Building ID for each building by June 1, 2021.

Steps to Complete Phase One
1. Download and review the Phase One Benchmarking Checklist.
2. Create an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account. Review the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Data Collection Worksheet to identify what information/use characteristics you'll need to collect to create your account and set up your building.
3. Click the button below to look up your Building ID and input it into your building's ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account. In the property's ‘Details’ tab, check that the correct Building ID is entered as a ‘Standard ID’.

                                      Building ID Look Up 

Phase Two: Once building owners have acquired their Building IDs, successfully set up ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account(s), and connected their Building IDs to their building, owners will need to acquire electricity, gas, and water data for calendar year 2020 from their utility providers. Once whole-building data is acquired later this year, owners can submit their benchmarking reports at a later date in 2021. Additional notifications will be sent over the next several months that outline steps for Phase Two completion.

If you already have access to your whole-building energy and water data for calendar year 2020, submit your 2021 Benchmarking Report directly to the City of Columbus via the Data Reporting Link.

                                      Benchmarking Data Submission

Sustainable Columbus logo

Book One-on-One Benchmarking Assistance
In order to assist building owners in their benchmarking journeys, the City of Columbus offers technical support and compliance assistance through the Benchmarking Help Desk

Schedule a one-on-one call with the help desk here.

Stay Up to Date with the Latest Resources
Receive the latest Benchmarking resources, tools, and news by updating or uploading your contact information in the Building Contact Form. It's recommended that an email contact is included in your contact information.

How to Comply

Phase One: Buildings owners and managers of buildings 100,000 square feet and larger are required to create an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account and acquire their Columbus Building ID for each building by June 1, 2021.

Steps to Comply
1. Download and review the Benchmarking Checklist for Phase One.
2. Create an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account. Review the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Data Collection Worksheet to identify what information you'll need to collect to create your account and set up your building.
3. Click the button below to look up your Building ID and input it into your building's ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account. In the property's ‘Details’ tab, check that the correct Building ID is entered as a ‘Standard ID’.

                                      Building ID Look Up 

All properties will need at least the following data to benchmark:
     • name of property, 
     • address, 
     • total gross floor area, 
     • irrigated area (if applicable), 
     • year built/planned for construction completion, 
     • occupancy, 
     • and at least 12 consecutive months of data. 

Phase Two: Once building owners have acquired their Building IDs, successfully set up ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account(s), and connected their Building IDs to their building, owners will need to acquire electricity, gas, and water data for calendar year 2020 from their utility providers. Once whole-building data is acquired later this year, owners can submit their benchmarking reports at a later date in 2021. Additional notifications will be sent over the next several months that outline steps for Phase Two completion.

If you already have access to your whole-building energy and water data for calendar year 2020, submit your 2021 Benchmarking Report directly to the City of Columbus via the Data Reporting Link.

Energy Star Learn More Logo
Resources
The City of Columbus has created a variety of targeted technical resources to assist the Columbus Building Owner Community in achieving compliance with the Benchmarking Ordinance.
•  Phase One Checklist
•  Frequently Asked Questions
•  Benchmarking and Transparency 101

ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Tools & Training
ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager is an interactive resource management tool that enables you to benchmark the energy use of any type of building, all in a secure online environment. ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager is the most widely used tool to benchmark and analyze whole-building data, making it the industry-leading benchmarking tool. 

The EPA has many free and easy-to-use guides for getting started with Portfolio Manager.
• If you have two minutes, get started with the Benchmarking Starter Kit.
• If you have fifteen minutes, review the Basics of Building Benchmarking for Ordinance Compliance Guide.
• Want to be an expert in Benchmarking Compliance? Watch the Basics of Benchmarking Ordinance Compliance webinar series!
• Go deeper with ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and access the ENERGY STAR Webinar Library.

Ordinance Development Process
Learn more about how the Energy & Water Benchmarking & Transparency Ordinance was developed and designed by reviewing the Ordinance Development Process.