With the pending changes in California legislation, understanding solar options for commercial solar energy building owners and owners of multi-family homes is important. California’s Building Energy Efficiency Standards are updated approximately every three years. With the next set of standards being rolled out in 2019, and compliance mandates in 2020, now is the time to take steps to understand what changes are in the pipeline.
Simply put, Title 24 are Building Energy Efficiency Standards that are designed to ensure new and existing building achieve energy efficiency and preserve outdoor and indoor environmental quality. These codes mean overall lower energy costs for building owners, reliable delivery of services, increased comfort and improved environment. In fact, California energy-use reduction goals have a target of zero-net-energy by 2030 for commercial building owners. This makes having energy efficient buildings even more important to ensure buildings are meeting California targets for clean energy.
Assembly Bill 802
Assembly Bill 802 requires commercial buildings over 50,000 sqft to benchmark and disclose annual energy data. They must submit it to the California Energy Commission annually. This process, called Energy Benchmarking, is a two-step process. The process mandates building owners to track energy consumption for a 12-month basis. Then, compare your building’s data with other like buildings to understand relative performance. As California has set very aggressive energy goals, starting in 2020 and extending toward 2045 to be carbon-neutral, these measurements are becoming increasingly important. Additionally, AB 802 now requires all multi-family buildings owners to disclose their property’s energy usage to reveal their Title 24 compliance.
Leveraging the power of solar is even more important for commercial building owners. Much of the focus of solar news seems to stem around residential solar systems. However, changes in Title 24, coinciding with reporting mandates outlined in AB 802, means commercial building owners need to be proactive in managing their energy usage. Not only does building code mandate clean energy dependence, AB 802 has an increase in mandated reporting, meaning it will be much more difficult for commercial building owners not to make necessary energy efficiency upgrades. Furthermore, 2019 is the last year people can take advantage of the 30% tax incentive – which can save solar customers thousands of dollars off the top of their solar installations.
Take the time to reach out to your local solar installer who has the resources to design, install and monitor a commercial solar installation. California is a leader in clean energy. Take advantage of solar options today and become an industry leader in clean energy as well.