HVACs have been reliably delivering comfort to your occupants, while also keeping up with rising summer temperatures. Yet, how are they delivering on your local benchmarking and emissions regulations? They’ve also been put to the test trying to suppress airborne transmission of COVID-19. Yet, how is this impacting your ENERGY STAR or LEED Certifications down the road?

These recent conditions may mean that manual changes were made to your front-end controls. You’ve got your whole team focused on keeping your occupants safe and cool this summer. But this also means, you may have taken an eye off your energy efficiency requirements or goals. Further you may not know how any of these changes are affecting your buildings because there’s no benchmarking happening.

Increasingly most, if not all, major cities in the US have local ordinances that require commercial buildings to report and benchmark building performance. Additionally, most are currently expanding those ordinances in the coming years. The American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy tracks city requirements in their annual Clean Energy Scorecard. Buildings in New York city and Chicago must meet minimum efficiency requirements. Other cities, like Philadelphia, go further and require deeper audits and efficiency improvements be made after benchmarking data is reported.

Most large metropolises are aiming to reduce their burden on the environment, make their city a better and healthier place to live and work, and provide lasting benefits to the future of the city. And alongside that 40 of the country’s largest cities have a stated goal reducing carbon emissions by some percentage in the next decade. Buildings will play role in these efforts as carbon emissions from the built environment currently measure around 30-40% of an given city’s total. This is usually a close second to or exceeds the city’s total for transportation, which we more typically associate with high carbon emissions levels.

In fact, the built environment is a largely unregulated, highly polluting asset class. A key element of energy reduction and greenhouse gas emissions policies is and will be benchmarking performance. The built environment has huge potential to help reduce energy usage, yet most buildings are run efficiently.

Benchmarking can identify new savings opportunities, helps to realign facility management toward efficient operating mindset, and help the building systems perform better long term. Benchmarking can also reveal the opportunities for preventative maintenance. Active optimization efforts, like monitoring and ongoing commissioning through software, are basically continuous check-ins of the benchmarking standards a specific team, company, or municipality has set for its building(s).

So, while you’re thinking about keeping occupants happy and healthy this summer, keep in mind that software can do some of the heavy lifting analyzing your controls data to help deliver A+ comfort and operational excellence. Software delivers reports and tools that specifically help all levels of building ownership and operations keep their buildings on track to meet their benchmarking requirements and goals.

Learn more about PointGuard’s solution here. If you’re doing business in New York, Washington DC, Boston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Denver, or any large city across the U.S., PointGuard has the expertise to help with your benchmarking requirements.