Time flies. Do you remember back in 2007 when Arnold Schwarzenegger was governor and the state assembly passed AB 1103 Commercial Building Energy Use Disclosure Program? It was supposed to begin in 2010, but of course, it got changed and delayed and modified and finally, low and behold, the time to disclose energy data is upon us. The first phase of the Energy Use Disclosure Requirements begins July 1, 2013.
To refresh our memories, Assembly Bills 1103 and 531 require owners of nonresidential buildings located in California to disclose energy usage of such buildings in advance of any sale, lease, or financing of the entire building.
Here is the schedule for when commercial buildings need to keep and disclose energy usage records:
2. On and after January 1, 2014, for buildings with a total gross floor area between 10,000 square feet and 50,000 square feet; and
3. On and after July 1, 2014, for buildings with a total gross floor area between 5,000 square feet 10,000 square feet.
AB 1103 and 531
Assembly Bill 1103, signed into law on October 12, 2007, requires the tracking of the energy use of all nonresidential buildings and the disclosure of such energy use as part of the sale, lease, or financing of an entire nonresidential building. T
The disclosure requirement is intended to “motivate building operators to take actions to improve their buildings’ energy profiles” and “to allow building owners and operators to compare their buildings’ performance to that of similar buildings and to manage their buildings’ energy costs.”
Since we’re talking government, AB 1103 then added Section 25402.10 which contained a compliance deadline of January 1, 2010. Assembly Bill 531 removed that deadline, and replaced it with the disclosure of energy usage data on a schedule of compliance established by the State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission.
Compliance with Assembly Bills 1103 and 531 expects owners of nonresidential buildings to take certain actions at least 30 days before the sale, lease, or financing of the entire building.
1. Register for an account with “Portfolio Manager,” the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR program online tool for managing building energy use data.
2. Create a profile within Portfolio Manager for the nonresidential building.
3. Use Portfolio Manager to request that utilities serving the building release the last 12 months of energy use data for the building to Portfolio Manager. What you’ll get is:
- Disclosure Summary Sheet;
- Statement of Energy Performance;
- Data Checklist; and
- Facility Summary (collectively, the “Disclosure Data”).
4. After the utility data has been provided, download the Disclosure Data; and provide the Disclosure Data as part of the sale, lease, or financing.
(Regulations section 1683(a) + 1684(c).)
Here’s the curious caveat, there is no specific penalty for non-compliance, but a failure to disclose a building’s energy usage could be viewed as a material fact in the transaction.
The Jolly Green Giant might feel right at home climbing the tall, green buildings that make up the urban forest of Los Angeles.
Skyscrapers in and of themselves are a green concept – high density living + work, close to mass transit, shared utilities. If you don’t mind having neighbors, they’re a big benefit. Manhattan can actually be considered the greenest place in America, if measured by energy use per inhabitant. If New York City were a state, it would be 12th in population and last in energy consumption…why? Skyscrapers.
Building skyscrapers in Los Angeles is difficult and expensive. Beyond the costly price of land, geographic issues like earthquakes and proximity to the San Andreas Fault line, as well as L.A. rigorous engineering and green standards.
Currently, this list of tallest buildings in Los Angeles ranks skyscrapers L.A. by height. Our tallest building is the 73-story U.S. Bank Tower. Finished in 1989, it rises 1,018 feet and stands as the tallest building in the state of California, tallest building west of the Mississippi, and the 10th-tallest building in the United States.
The list of the greenest skyscrapers in Los Angeles is still a work in process. The history of skyscrapers in Los Angeles began with the 1903 completion of the Continental Building, a 151 ft (46 m), 13-storey high-rise at 408 South Spring Street. But, we’ve come a long, green way since then…check out these impressive feats or architecture.
1. U.S. Bank Tower
633 W. Fifth St. Completed in 1989. 1,018 feet, 73 stories.
Architect: Henry N. Cobb
Our U.S. Bank Tower is the 47th-tallest building in the world, 10th-tallest building in the United States, tallest building on the West Coast of the United States, tallest building in California; and the tallest building in the world with a helipad on its roof. Formerly known as Library Tower; at the time of its completion, the building was the tallest structure in a major active seismic region (Taipei 101 now holds this title.)
2. Aon Center
707 Wilshire Blvd. Completed in 1973. 858 feet, 62 stories.
Architect: Charles Luckman
Aon Center is the 133rd-tallest building in the world, 31st-tallest building in the United States; tallest building constructed in Los Angeles in the 1970s.
3. Two California Plaza
Two California Plaza at 350 S. Grand Ave. Completed 1992. 750 feet, 52 stories.
Architect: Arthur Erickson
Two California Plaza takes kudos for being the 72nd-tallest building in the United States; tallest building constructed in Los Angeles in the 1990s.
4. Gas Co. Tower
Gas Co. Tower at 333 W. Fifth St. Completed in 1991. 749 feet, 52 stories.
Architect: Richard Keating
Known as the 77th-tallest building in the United States.
5. Bank of America Plaza
Bank of America Plaza at 333 S. Hope St. Completed in 1974. 735 feet, 55 stories.
Architect: Albert C. Martin
The 92nd-tallest building in the United States used to be known as Security Pacific Bank Plaza, ARCO Plaza, and BP Plaza.
Los Angeles went through a large building boom that lasted from the early 1960s to the early 1990s, during which time the city saw the completion of 30 of its 32 tallest buildings, including the U.S. Bank Tower, Aon Tower, and Two California Plaza. The city has 25 skyscrapers at least 492 feet in height, more than any other city in the Pacific coast region. As of July 2011, there are 505 completed high-rises in the city.
12 skyscrapers approved or proposed for construction. The most recently completed skyscraper in Los Angeles is L.A. Live Ritz-Carlton Hotels & Condominiums, which rises 653 feet 199 m and 54 floors.
by Jodi Summers
Didja know? The residential sector accounts for 33% of electricity consumption in the U.S. – we spent $166 billion on electricity in 2010. Saving money on electricity is what this story is all about. A new study has revealed that not only do green homes lower electric bills, having a green certified home adds 9% to its appraised sales value.
The study, conducted by California state university professors, concluded that homes labeled with Energy Star, LEED or Greenpoint Rated (California’s label) sell for a premium of 9% compared to average similar homes. In Los Angeles County, the sales price of homes and after they got green certification showed a price rise of 5.5-9%.
“Green upgrades aren’t usually tracked as home features on real estate listing services, which makes it challenging for appraisers to determine the monetary value of the upgrades,” shares appraiser Debra Little. “We ultimately determined that the many benefits of green homes do lead to higher home values in the local market.”
The study conducted a pricing analysis of all 1.6 million single-family home sales in California from 2007-2012, controlling for all other variables that typically influence selling price, such as location, size, age and amenities. Research revealed that the average sales price of a non-certified California home is $400,000. Green certification raises the price by more than $34,800.
Green is most coveted in areas of California that have the highest sales of hybrid cars. People will pay more to buy a house that’s green-certified because it fits their values.
They also found premiums to be higher in the hottest parts of the state; people believed that homes with green certifications would stay cooler without more energy costs.
The study is the first rigorous, large-scale economic analysis of the value of green home labels in California.
An interesting conclusion is that the sales premium is greater than the cost of the green features. The study found the most common green features are insulation and air sealing of attic and walls, weather stripping and efficient HVAC – none of which are particularly expensive.
The Los Angeles office real estate market is still unimpressive, but, believe it or not, we’ve got it better than most, thanks to our focus on green and technology.
“The energy and the tech-driven markets are the clear standouts right now. It has become a reoccurring theme that markets in Texas and California are leading the nation in most demand and rent growth metrics,” supports Kevin Thorpe, Cassidy Turley’s chief economist.
While San Francisco led the country in rent growth compared to a year-ago, Los Angeles ranked in the top 10 markets, along with San Jose, Seattle, Austin, Denver, Miami, Orlando and Raleigh, NC. Overall, the West region led the way with the largest amount of new net demand, followed by the South, then the Midwest and the Northeast, respectively. Nationwide, nearly one third of markets reporting an uptick in sales.
“We are at a point where there is healthy job creation, but over 50% of the jobs created in recent months using office space were temp jobs,” shares Thorpe. “These jobs don’t move the needle immediately for the office sector, but they do set the stage for much stronger demand numbers down the road.”
Export statistics note that U.S. office rents hit bottom at the end of 2010. But given that there are still high vacancy levels, lease rates are not expected to increase anytime soon. It’s anticipated that office asking will increase by approximately 1% this year.
“Overall, the first quarter presented a mixed bag of results and expectations for the rest of the year,” notes John Sikaitis, senior vice president of research at Jones Lang LaSalle. “While the recovery slowed during the quarter, it remains intact.”
Technology expansion and startup activity gained momentum in almost every market with prospects for growth. Additionally, energy-heavy markets posted some of the largest leases and witnessed sales momentum and speculative new construction.
“Looking ahead to the remainder of 2012, markets will continue to recover, and in some cases contract, at different rates of speed,” observes Sikaitis. “Overall rents across most markets will grow, but at slow and measured paces unless some significant cushion of technology or energy pockets exist.”
On the road to going green, Americans are taking basic, cost-cutting measures. When it comes to spending money on energy retrofits, the average American still has their hand in their pocket, according to a recent Harris Poll.
Most Americans are taking basic steps to go green > turning off lights, televisions or other appliances when not in use (82%), replacing incandescent bulbs with fluorescent ones (58%), using power strips (56%), looking for ENERGY STAR labels when replacing appliances (55%) and using low watt bulbs (54%).
When it comes to investing in energy efficiency, Americans are reticent. The poll notes that less than half of Americans have installed a programmable thermostat (37%), sealed gaps in floors or walls around pipes or electric wiring (34%), installed low-flow faucets (29%), energy efficient windows (28%) or added insulation to an attic, crawl space or accessible exterior windows (27%).
Surprisingly, despite all the marketing, just in one ten U.S. adults (11%) have conducted a home energy evaluation or audit. And there are regional differences in how homes go green. Three in five Westerners (59%) use low wattage light bulbs compared to just 48% of Easterners. Two in five of those living in the West (40%) have installed low-flow faucets compared to just 25% of those in the East and 23% in the Midwest. In the meantime, over half of Southerners (55%) change their air filters monthly in comparison to just 27% of Easterners and 28% of Westerners.
The technology is there > green buttons, smart meters, yet one in five Americans (21%) say they have been contacted by their utility or co-op about energy efficiency tools. Nationwide, we’ve been good about it, as nearly 1/3rd of Westerners (32%) have been contacted compared to just 16% of Midwesterners.
The green technology item that Americans really want is a dashboard in their home (48%), even with the understanding that they would have to be proactive about their energy use. The dashboard is exciting because many Americans would prefer to control their energy usage – seven in ten U.S. adults (69%) would prefer to manage that energy distribution themselves while only 9% would prefer to have their utility manage their energy use.
Technology is ahead of adoption. American families are proactive about taking simple steps to be more conscientious about using and paying for energy in their own homes. As to be expected, the recession has curtailed many from making any large green improvement investments. Perhaps energy companies will need to come up with more stimulating incentives to inspire customers to adopt energy efficient solutions.
By Jodi Summers
The White House issued a challenge to the nation’s utilities > to allow customers more access to their own energy data. California utilities are the first to step up. Welcome the Green Button. This online tool from Southern California Edison, San Diego Gas & Electric and Pacific Gas & Electric will allow consumers and businesses to see how much electricity they’re using and to download the data so that we can figure out how to use less.
The Green Button allows customers to download of personalized energy usage data through its secure website, My Energy. Developers and third parties will be able receive energy usage data from customers in machine-readable form.
The utilities’ goal is for customers to better understand how their consumption changes over the day, week and seasons. This data, in conjunction with smart meters, which transmit energy usage information in real time, should give .customers the tools to control usage, cut costs and conserve energy…
The Green Button project “is one of many initiatives designed to offer our customers choice, convenience and control,” Ted Reguly, SDG&E’s director of customer programs and assistance, said in a statement.
Here’s how it works: After logging in, customers can click on the Green Button and download up to 13 months of their detailed electricity usage data, which can be segmented down to 15-minute intervals. The three utilities are the first in the nation to adopt the technology, which uses a cloud platform developed by Tendril, a Boulder, Colo.-based company.
“Green Button marks the beginning of a new era of consumer control over energy use, and local empowerment to cut waste and save money,” observes Aneesh Chopra, U.S. Chief Technology Officer. “With the benefits of open data standards, American app developers and other innovators can apply their creativity to bring the smart grid to life for families—not only in California but in communities all across the Nation.”
Standardizing and freeing the data can create an ecosystem for developers to use that data to create apps that can deliver new services and products. The line of thinking is > the internet has thrived because of open data and standardized information systems. Delivering that energy data directly back to consumers is expected to lead to energy-efficiency measures that may change a consumers’ energy-consumption behavior.
The Green Button project “is one of many initiatives designed to offer our customers choice, convenience and control,” notes Ted Reguly, SDG&E’s director of customer programs and assistance.
The three utilities are the first in the nation to adopt the technology, which uses a cloud platform developed by Tendril, a Boulder, Colo.-based company. The Green Button was inspired by the government’s success with its Blue Button initiative, which allows veterans instant access to their health care data.”
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