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DCRA Setting Standard on Energy Code Enforcement, Audit Finds

Friday, December 2, 2016
The Institute for Market Transformation and Cadmus finds commercial buildings compliant with 99% of Energy Code

Washington, D.C –The Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) announced today that its award-winning Green Building Division has earned one of the highest ratings available on Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) and Cadmus’ independent audit evaluating Commercial Energy Code Compliance. IMT and Cadmus’ audit found that DCRA set a new standard for commercial energy code enforcement, with a weighted code compliance rate of 99%.

DCRA is doing its part to achieve Sustainable DC goals. The near-perfect compliance rate reflects a significant improvement from the District’s 74% compliance rate just two years ago.

“DCRA endeavored to improve green building literacy among the District’s construction and design professionals through outreach and education,” said DCRA Director Melinda Bolling. “The near perfect compliance rating is a direct result of the DCRA Green Building Division’s tremendous outreach and education efforts.”

IMT’s Commercial Energy Code Compliance audit program assesses how comprehensively and consistently a jurisdiction’s code is enforced. DCRA earned high marks for instituting an energy verification form on its building plans that allows designers to demonstrate compliance. Also, the audit highlighted the value and reach of more than 50 training workshops DCRA has hosted on green building issues since 2014.

The District’s rating is especially impressive, given its high volume of work. In Fiscal Year 2016, DCRA’s Green Building Division completed 2,536 green permit reviews—nearly double the 1,331 green permit reviews completed in Fiscal Year 2015.

“The District has become a national leader, setting a high bar for green infrastructure,” said Tommy Wells, Director of the Department of Energy and Environment. “This is an integral part of the District’s ongoing work to increase resilience and to prepare for mitigating the effects of climate change.”

IMT is a nonprofit organization that focuses on improving the energy efficiency of buildings. An IMT-led task force estimated that each dollar spent on code compliance and enforcement averages a returns of six dollars in energy savings—a 600% return on investment.