Property Compliance and Enforcement
How St. Louis City buildings 50,000 square feet and above can comply with energy consumption standards
For each type of building (Property Type), Building Energy Performance Standards sets a Target in terms of total energy consumption per square foot, but does not mandate the methods used to meet it. There are no specific improvements required, which gives properties the flexibility to make smart investments based on their unique knowledge of building operations, planned expenditures, and financing cycles. Early action is key to compliance!
Representatives will take steps ranging from reporting data that shows a property is already compliant to investing in energy conservation measures following a retro-commissioning or energy audit.
Each Cycle, properties shall pursue one of four ‘Paths’ to compliance.
- Paths 1 and 2 are preferred because properties comply by simply meeting or exceeding their Targets.
- Paths 3 and 4 present alternatives for properties that are unable to meet their Targets due to unique constraints.
Failure to comply will result in penalties in the forms of fines, liens, and/or loss of occupancy permits.
Each Cycle, properties shall pursue one of four ‘Pathways’ to compliance.
Properties that meet their Target are compliant for that Cycle.
- Early Adopters
Properties that meet their Target and improve on their ‘Baseline’ performance, or starting point, will comply for future Cycles:
- 20% → current Cycle, plus next Cycle
- 50% → current Cycle, plus next two Cycles
- Narrow the Gap Alternative
Properties unable to meet their Target comply by improving energy efficiency to halfway between their Baseline and Target. (Only available for the first two Cycles for properties that submitted a valid Baseline year benchmarking report.)
- Custom Alternative Compliance
Properties that demonstrate they cannot meet their Target (Paths 1 and 2) or Narrow the Gap (Path 3) due to unique constraints may develop a custom alternative compliance plan (with City approval).
Paths 1 and 2 are preferred because properties comply by simply meeting (or doing better than) the Targets. Failure to comply will result in penalties in the forms of fines, liens, and/or loss of occupancy permits.
Compliance Cycle Breakdown
Most properties operate on 4+1-year Cycles with compliance deadlines in 2025, 2030, 2035, and so on:
- First three years → improve performance.
- Fourth (Verification) year → demonstrate meeting the Target.
- Fifth year → maintain performance and plan improvements while OBP revises Targets.
Houses of worship and qualified affordable housing operate on similar 7-year Cycles with deadlines in 2027, 2034, 2041, and so on.
What Should Properties Do Now?
- Check your benchmark reporting data in Energy Star Portfolio Manager and your compliance status at STLbenchmarking.com.
- Get an energy audit to understand your building characteristics, equipment, and energy use.
- Identify energy conservation measures.
- Create an internal team to start your planning and implementation strategies.
- Develop a strategic energy management plan.
- Engage with any building tenants.
Violations and Enforcement
- A written warning shall be issued by the Commissioner to an owner who fails to submit any required benchmarking information. Such a warning letter shall be effective on the date of issuance and shall be mailed to the owner’s last known address as determined by county record.
- In the event required benchmarking information is not reported within sixty (60) days of the date the written warning is issued, said failure shall constitute an offense and shall be punishable, upon conviction, by a fine of not less than $50.00 and not more than $200.00. For any continuing violation of this article, each day of the violation shall be considered a separate offense. In no event shall the cumulative fine imposed hereunder exceed $1000.00 annually.