San Francisco Existing Commercial Buildings Ordinance

Ordinance Overview


  1. Energy Benchmark
    • Deadline: April 1st (annually)
  2. Energy & Water Audit
    • Deadline: April 1st (due once every 5 years)

Properties Required to Comply:

  • Building Size: 10,000 – 49,999 sq.ft.
    • Audit Requirement: ASHRAE Level I
  • Building Size: 50,000 sq.ft. or greater
    • Audit Requirement: ASHRAE Level II

Energy Benchmarking Requirement (due Annually)

The City of San Francisco requires an annual Energy Benchmark report for buildings > 10,000 sq. ft. to be submitted by April 1st annually.

The utility data that is required is for 12 months of the previous year’s usage.

  • Example: In 2023, John submitted Energy Benchmark utility data from the previous year (April 2022-March 2022). 

All data is entered into ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager and then submitted to the San Francisco Department of the Environment. Utility information that is required includes Electrical, Gas, & Water. Any building with a high Energy Benchmark score (if applicable) may be able to apply for a Certification that can lead to an exemption on the Energy Audit required once every 5 years.

Audits/RCx Requirement (due once every 5 yrs)

The City requires building owners to comply with both the annual Energy Benchmark requirement and an on-site inspection* once every 5 years. The deadlines for each building will vary based on the last digit of the LADBS # (use chart above to find your deadline) and will be required to comply every 5 years from your original deadline. 

Compliance Options:

  • Exemptions
    • Building > 5 years old (based on COI)
    • ENERGY STAR Certification
    • Simple Building Exemptions
    • Performance Pathway
    • Use Intensity Decrease (EUI/WUI)
  • Standard Compliance 
    • Energy Audit and Water Audit


*On-site inspections may be required to confirm the information provided. 

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