State of Illinois Report on Building Benchmarking and Labeling

Like most building portfolio owners, the State of Illinois is interested in understanding the energy use of the buildings they currently own and operate. By obtaining this information, they could make more informed decisions on how their buildings perform, better determine annual energy budgets, and produce a preliminary analysis of which buildings to target for retrocomissioning or future energy savings projects.

Passage of Public Act 096-0896 invented a pilot project to investigate the current tools and methodologies available to manage energy use in their buildings. The State of Illinois, through the Capital Development Board and the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, requested MEEA to assist in the research and data analysis. Ultimately, we fostered the creation of a summary report for the benchmarking and building energy labeling pilot.

Working with the State of Illinois Department of Central Management Services and the Energy Resource Center at the University of Illinois - Chicago, building characteristics and monthly energy data was collected for a sample of state buildings. This information was entered into ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager (ES PM) for analysis where it normalized the energy use with existing weather data and created a 1-100 score or label for each building. The tool also created a yearly energy use per square foot metric (or EUI) for each building, allowing comparisons across building type, size, location, and use.

This summary report reviews the process enacted and also incorporates suggestions on how this pilot could be expanded to include all state owned and operated buildings in Illinois. A similar, four-step technique to develop energy analysis projects – by measuring, analyzing, implementing, and verifying - is currently practiced or being refined in a number of Midwest states, including Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Similar initiatives could be implemented by other states or municipalities to track their owned and operated buildings.