Late last year, the City of Boston introduced BERDO 2.0, a revised version of the 2013 Building Energy Reporting and Disclosure Ordinance (BERDO). BERDO aims to decrease building emissions, requiring Boston’s large and medium-sized buildings to report their annual energy and water use, limit greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and complete an energy action and assessment every five years.
The following must now submit annual energy and water reporting:
- Nonresidential buildings over 20,000 sq. Ft
- Residential buildings that are 20,000 sq. Ft or larger or have 15 or more units
- Any parcel with multiple buildings that sum to at least 20,000 square feet or 15 units
Owners will self certify their reporting data every year, except for:
- Third-party verification is required every 5 years starting in 2022
- Verifications must be performed by qualified energy professionals
Building owners must submit their energy and water use through EPA Portfolio Manager by May 15th each year. The reports should data for the previous calendar year. After every five years of complying with BERDO, buildings must comply with the standards of the energy action and assessment and show how they are decreasing their energy usage.
GHG Emission Limits
In addition to reporting annual energy and water use, starting in 2025, buildings must now meet annual GHG emissions limits based on occupancy type(s):
*Buildings (and portfolios) may apply for an Individual Compliance Schedule, if approved, as long as emissions decline on a linear or better basis, reduce emissions 50% by 2030 and reduce emissions 100% by 2050.
Buildings with more than one primary use may comply with blended CO2e emissions if they meet specific requirements. Owners may choose to deduct energy used by emergency backup power generation and electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) from a building’s total energy use.
The Road to Compliance:
There are three main ways to meet the energy action and assessment requirements:
- Apply for an efficiency certification such as LEED Silver Certification, EPA EnergyStar Certification, or Zero-net Energy Certification.
- Work with an energy management consultant that can plan and implement energy efficiency or renewable energy projects that reduce your building’s energy consumption or greenhouse gas emissions and save your organization money.
- Have an energy assessment audit performed that will provide specific recommendations to increase the building energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions.
The minimum standard of action for BERDO is a 15% reduction in total site energy consumption, site energy use intensity, or total greenhouse gas emissions, or a 15-point increase in Energy Star score over five years. This improvement is verified through the annual BERDO reporting.
Deadlines to be aware of:
- Buildings between 20,000 and 35,000 square feet or residential buildings between 15 to 35 units will need to begin reporting their energy use in 2022. They will not be subject to the emissions standards until 2031, reporting for 2030 emissions.
- A third-party verification of Emissions Standards is required every 5 years, starting in 2026.