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Benchmarking Report Shows Energy Efficiency, Cost Savings in Chicago Properties

The Lightfoot administration released the 2019 Chicago Energy Benchmarking Report, showing nearly $74 million in savings from energy reductions in properties greater than 50,000 square feet and a rapid decline in carbon emissions per square foot in buildings. 

The Chicago Energy Benchmarking Ordinance was passed by City Council in 2013 to unlock energy and cost savings opportunities. It uses the 1 – 100 ENERGY STAR score to track energy performance.

The median ENERGY STAR score for all reporting properties in 2019 was 57, a six-point decrease since 2018, but higher than the national median of 50. This indicates Chicago properties over 50,000 square feet are performing slightly better than the majority of comparable buildings in the U.S.

Furthermore, there was a 32% uptick in properties that received ENERGY STAR certification since 2016, indicating Chicago properties increasingly meet energy performance standards set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.


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About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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