USGBC

City Energy Standards Compliance Clock Ticking for Building Owners

By KERRY SMITH, EDITOR, ST. LOUIS CONSTRUCTION NEWS AND REVIEW

Public and private-sector building owners within the City of St. Louis have 12 months remaining of a 36-month deadline to prepare their facilities’ action plans with regard to smart energy usage.

Under the conditions of a Building Energy Performance Standard (BEPS) ordinance passed by the St. Louis Board of Alderman in 2020 and signed by former Mayor Lyda Krewson, all buildings totaling 50,000 square feet or more are required to benchmark their energy usage and work toward improving that score. Beginning in 2024, analysis and evaluation of buildings’ total energy usage will occur. In 2025, a modest fine-based enforcement will begin. The program will continue forward on a five-year cycle – three years to make energy efficiency improvements, one year of analysis/evaluation and one year of enforcement for those structures who don’t achieve their mandated improvement requirements.

Chris Ruth, mid-Missouri controls manager in the building automation division at Integrated Facility Services, serves as a board member for the U.S. Green Building Council’s Missouri Gateway Chapter. Ruth says that although the city’s fines aren’t steep, building owners who do not meet their required improvement levels could also be affected in terms of occupancy and construction permits.

“St. Louis is the 4th city in the U.S. to sign these standards into law and the first city in the Midwest to adopt them in a concerted effort to mandate significant reductions in building energy use,” Ruth said. “It’s an overall approach toward being more energy conscious. Nationwide, buildings use 40 percent of total energy consumption, with 40 percent of that consumed by heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment. Making buildings more affordable through energy efficiency measures, and in turn making utility costs more affordable – particularly with under-performing buildings in underserved areas – is the focus on these energy standards.”

For more details on St. Louis’ BEPS, see https://www.stlouis-mo.gov/government/departments/public-safety/building/building-energy-improvement-board/documents/beps-ordinance.cfm.

Looking for Green Businesses to Cast Green Shadows

The USGBC-Missouri Gateway Chapter Higher Education committee is looking for mentors to expose students to green jobs within the Missouri Gateway territory through a one-day shadow of local business people.  Participating companies get access to local students interested in the industry without the financial commitment of an internship.

Apply by September 15, 2016 to be matched in the Fall 2016 semester.

Mentors must have an active USGBC-Missouri Gateway Chapter membership and fill out an online application detailing their interest in becoming a Mentor and providing a list of activities in their typical workday. Depending on the number of shadow applications, mentors may or may not be called upon. Click here to view the Green Shadow MENTOR application.

Shadows must fill out an online application outlining any previous experience with green building, their interests in sustainability and the one day shadow program, as well as a reference such as an advisor or professor.  Click here to view the Green Shadow STUDENT application.

Selection and matching of Mentors and Shadows will be made by the program administrators based on the alignment of Shadows’ field of study and potential occupation with the mentors’ occupation and typical work activities.

Once a match is made, program administrators check the availability of the mentor and establish a mutually agreeable date.  After a date is agreed upon, the student will be responsible for calling the mentor to finalize logistics (meeting place and time).

After the shadow experience, both participants complete a follow-up questionnaire to rate the experience and give feedback to the program administrators.