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Upcoming Benchmarking Trainings

Need benchmarking assistance? Check out these upcoming assistance opportunities. These trainings can help property managers learn about the City's benchmarking policy, ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, as well as the utilities' automatic data transfer tools to complete the benchmarking of their properties.

Can't make a training session? View the slides from previous trainings or learn how to benchmark here.

Minneapolis Passes Energy Disclosure Policies

On Friday February 15th, Minneapolis City Council unanimously passed three energy disclosure policies. These policies include:

  • Multi-family building benchmarking. An expansion to the City's Commercial Building Energy Benchmarking and Transparency ordinance to now include multi-family buildings 50,000 sqft and greater to report annual energy and water consumption data to the City. Buildings will also be required to conduct an energy evaluation every 5 years, if a no-cost option is available.
  • Time-of-Sale energy disclosure  An energy report will now be included as part of the existing Truth in Sale of Housing (TISH) process for single family and duplex housing, allowing prospective home buyers and sellers to consider the efficiency of homes prior to purchase. 
  • Time-of-Rent energy disclosure
    • Multi-family buildings 50,000 sqft and greater will disclose their ENERGY STAR score and average energy use per sqft to prospective tenants prior to leasing. 
    • Multifamily buildings less than 50,000 sqft will disclose average energy use per sqft using an easily accessible portal for utility data.

Learn more about these policies here.

2018 Building Energy Challenge and Cost Share Award Ceremony

At the 2018 Green Business and Building Energy Challenge Awards, the City of Minneapolis recognized small businesses and buildings for their efforts to save energy and improve local air quality. As the final year of the Building Energy Challenge, the City recognized large commercial buildings that reduced their greenhouse gas emissions 15% from a 2014 baseline. While over 75% of participating buildings achieved or surpassed the goal, we celebrated 10 outstanding buildings that set an example for hundreds of others to improve energy efficiency, save on utility costs, and operate more sustainably. Learn more about these leaders and their energy projects here.

Updated 1-100 ENERGY STAR Scores coming August 26th

The Environmental Protection Agency is updating building performance metrics in Portfolio Manager based on the most recent Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey data. For most types of commercial buildings, this will result in a decrease in ENERGY STAR score, meaning that the national average building energy performance has improved. To learn more, visit ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager's website.

Despite new construction, 2016 Minneapolis Benchmarking Report finds reduction in commercial energy and water use

In the fifth year of commercial building benchmarking, the 2016 Minneapolis Benchmarking Report shows promising trends in commercial energy and water use. Although the square footage of commercial properties increased from 2014 to 2016, weather-normalized energy use intensity (EUI) and water consumption decreased 1.7% and 5.9% respectively. While parking garages demonstrated the greatest energy savings, dropping 36% over the three years, other commercial sectors are still rife with potential savings. Read the full report to analyze public and private building energy trends, review case studies, and identify future opportunities to save energy and gain building recognition.

$256,000 in City Funds Spurred Energy Investments in 38 Properties in 2017

The Minneapolis Green Business Cost Share program funded nearly twice as many projects in 2017 as in 2016, saving businesses $385,000 in utility bills and avoiding 1614 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually. Lighting conversions to LEDs made up 63% of funded projects, as they are the "easiest projects to do with the quickest payback." Other major projects included boiler upgrades, solar photovoltaics, air compressor optimization, and rooftop HVAC equipment replacements. Read more about the program’s energy and cost saving success along with stories from seven funding recipients in the report.

Congratulations to the 2017 Building Energy Challenge Award Winners

At the second Building Energy Challenge Awards, Council Vice President Glidden awarded the management teams of six Minneapolis commercial buidlings for their progress in improving energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Read the recap of the event.

Minneapolis-Saint Paul Ranks 17th in EPA’s 2017 List of Top Cities with ENERGY STAR® Certified Buildings

The Minneapolis-Saint Paul metro was ranked 17th in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 2017 list of U.S. metropolitan areas with the most ENERGY STAR certified buildings. The ranking confirms Minneapolis’ commitment to providing building owners and managers with the technical guidance, best practices, and training they need to make their buildings more energy efficient, save money, and reduce carbon emissions. Read more.

Ackerberg Group in the News for Energy Plans

The Ackerberg Group, property owner and manager of notable buildings such as Calhoun Square was recently featured in Finance and Commerce regarding their energy and other sustainability plans. Read more.

Reducing the energy waste of ‘plug load’

New Minnesota-based research suggests strategies for reducing electric plug load in offices. Plug load from computers, monitors, printers, and other devices can make up to 20-25% of electric use in today's offices, making it a valuable source for energy reductions. Read more.

Congratulations to the Building Energy Challenge Award Winners!

Congratulations to the winners at the Minneapolis Building Energy Challenge Awards 2016! On Nov. 2nd, we celebrated the energy efficiency of five innovative and determined buildings and highlighted the extraordinary work of building operators. Read the recap of the event.

Benchmarking Leads to Easy ENERGY STAR Certification for Colwell Building

With a score of 79, the Colwell Building in the North Loop is Minneapolis' newest ENERGY STAR certified building. Gretchen Lundberg, who was in charge of the office building’s application, says that for Minneapolis office buildings, certification is a must, “Prospective tenants ask if we’re LEED or ENERGY STAR certified.” Now, she can answer that question with an emphatic ‘yes!' The Colwell building took advantage of the City's ENERGY STAR Certification grant program. Read more of the story.

City Grants for ENERGY STAR Certification!

Do you have an efficient building? If so, tell others about it with ENERGY STAR certification!

And for a limited time, apply for a Minneapolis ENERGY STAR Certification Grant that covers more than 60% of the cost!

Certification provides recognition using the nationally known ENERGY STAR standard. By becoming certified, you join the ranks of leading organizations. Be one of the first to earn apply for certification and receive $500 toward an $800 site visit completed by a professional engineer. Check out the certification benefits:

  • Plaque for your building providing transparency to building occupants
  • Increased marketability of your well-run, energy efficient building to potential tenants
  • Recognition on Minneapolis and ENERGY STAR websites

DeLaSalle High School Sets Energy Legacy

DeLaSalle High School, the private high school on Nicollet Island, may be best known for its Catholic, LaSallian tradition and focus to educating diverse students, but it is quickly adding sustainability to its renown. Through faculty, staff, alumni, and student engagement, the school is making headway at improving the efficiency of its own building and is ensuring a legacy of energy sustainability. Read more.

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About: This website was made possible through cooperation between the City Of Minneapolis, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and the Center for Energy and Environment.

Background photo credit: Downtown Minneapolis - Mill City Museum by Jeremiah Peterson, on Flickr