How to Interpret Your Data
Commercial Energy Guide Reporting Option
Determining the energy performance of your buildings not only helps you comply with the City’s ECAD ordinance, but it also is a key first step to understanding and reducing energy consumption. Your building’s energy use data may uncover opportunities to both reduce your carbon footprint and save money.
Energy Use Intensity (EUI) is expressed as energy per square foot per year. It’s calculated by dividing the total electric energy consumed by the facility in one year by the total square footage of the facility (measured in kilowatt hour per square foot, or kWh/sf), based on electric utility data and property tax assessor data.
Generally, a low EUI signifies good energy performance, while a high EUI may indicate room for improvement.
W/sf indicates the wattage (W), or maximum demand power per square foot (W/sf) Austin Energy recorded at your facility during a billing cycle. Customers with a high demand consume more power, and have a higher cost to serve.
It’s worth checking into the W/sf at your facility since a high W/sf may be a result of older, less efficient equipment. Making upgrades may allow you to reduce your power demand and move to a lower rate schedule, saving you money in the process.
Min Pf indicates the minimum power factor Austin Energy recorded at your facility during a billing cycle. Power factor is a measure of how effectively electric power is consumed at commercial and industrial facilities.
Customers who have a low power factor (lower than .9) draw more electric current over an interval of time and have a higher cost to serve. A low power factor results in greater system losses, and requires Austin Energy to install or purchase additional capacity.
Customers with a high power factor (.9 or higher) consume energy more effectively and, as a result, have a lower cost to serve.
All customers served by Austin Energy are ranked by type of use and EUI, and then this ranking is applied to a scale from 100 to 1.
A facility with a percentile rank close to 100 is more efficient. Austin Energy recommends investigating energy efficiency improvements if your facility has a percentile rank below 50.
Quartiles are EUI ranking subsets. A facility with a ranking higher than 75 is more efficient than most facilities with similar uses, and is in the "upper quartile".
Facilities with ranking below 25 use more energy per square foot than similar facilities. Austin Energy recommends investigating energy efficiency improvements if your building ranks below 50.
Austin Energy Can Help You Offset Cost of Improvements
While the ECAD ordinance does not require you to make energy efficiency improvements, Austin Energy provides commercial rebates and other incentives to help building owners make smart energy choices.
Alternate Reporting Option
Building owners may prefer to use the Environmental Protection Agency's ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager to benchmark their properties. Energy data entered into this secure online tool can be used for commercial ECAD compliance. Portfolio Manager can also help you:
- Track and assess energy and water use across one or several buildings
- Measure your carbon footprint
- Compare to other commercial buildings nationwide
- Get an energy rating performance score
- Promote your ENERGY STAR certified building
If you have not received information regarding the ECAD ordinance reporting process for commercial building owners, please call 512-482-5346 or email us for assistance.