In leased spaces, finding a fair way to fund energy efficiency upgrades can be a challenge for building owners and their tenants. To unravel conflicting interests, the Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2015 includes a provision to create a Tenant Star program that will encourage energy efficiency in leased commercial spaces.
Modeled after the ENERGY STAR program for whole buildings, Tenant Star will be the first government-endorsed label in the U.S. to encourage building owners and tenants to collaborate on sustainable design and operations.
The guidelines will include:
- Policies and best practices to reduce energy used by lighting, plug loads, heating, cooling, cooking, laundry, and other systems.
- Models and simulation methods that predict the quantity of energy used by tenant-occupied spaces with high-performance energy efficiency measures compared to those only designed to code.
- Measurement and verification platforms demonstrating actual energy use of high-performance efficiency measures and whether such initiatives generate the savings intended in the initial design and construction of the separate spaces.
Various federal agencies are starting to conduct studies, gather data, and develop guidelines to implement the program within the next several years.