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Institute for Market Transformation

Promoting energy efficiency in buildings
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IMT in the District of Columbia

Based in the District of Columbia since its founding in 1996, IMT has long worked closely with the DC government to promote greener, more energy-efficient building practices in the city. We have worked on many fronts to advance sustainability in DC--below is a roundup of these initiatives dating back to 2006.

 

DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DC SEU)

The District of Columbia Sustainable Energy Utility (DC SEU) is designed to help District households, businesses, and institutions save energy and money through energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. The DC SEU is committed to community engagement, economic development, job creation, and environmental preservation.

The utility is a project of the Sustainable Energy Partnership under contract to the District Department of the Environment (DDOE). The Sustainable Energy Partnership consists of nine organizations, including IMT. We lead Market Transformation efforts such as assisting with energy benchmarking and promoting energy-code compliance. IMT's role in the DC SEU is spearheaded by program associate John Andreoni, who runs the Benchmarking Help Center.

 

Legislation

DC Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008 (CAEA)

A lead advisor to the bill's lead sponsor, DC Councilmember Mary Cheh, IMT provided technical assistance in crafting the CAEA in 2008. The CAEA--which launched the District to the forefront of sustainability and energy efficiency nationwide--was passed unanimously by the DC Council on July 15, 2008, and signed into law by Mayor Adrian Fenty on Aug. 4, 2008.

Among other energy conservation and efficiency initiatives, the bill required for the first time in any U.S. jurisdiction that the energy performance of commercial buildings be annually rated (or benchmarked) and disclosed to the marketplace. IMT assisted the DC City Council in amending the Green Building Act to include this rating and disclosure mandate for commercial properties.

CAEA also included a concept that IMT helped develop: the creation of a privately contracted, publicly funded sustainable energy program provider. That new entity, the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (SEU), is based on the country's most successful models for such utilities, such as Efficiency Vermont.

DC Green Building Act of 2006

In response to requests from DC City Council committees, IMT provided technical assistance in crafting the Green Building Act. IMT served on the Green Building Task Force, advising on policies pertaining to green buildings and energy efficiency.

The 2006 Green Building Act, among other things, extended the city's LEED requirement for new buildings beyond government structures to include all private buildings by 2012.

 

Building codes

The 2008 District of Columbia Construction Codes, which IMT helped write, was published on Dec. 26, 2008. DC adopted, as amendments to the International Energy Conservation Code 2006 (IECC 2006), the 30% Solution and ASHRAE 90.1 2007. DC's new building codes mandate greener practices in several key areas, including water efficiency, energy conservation, and cool roofs.

Read more about DC building energy codes on our DC Codes page.