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Guideline E.1: Energy Efficiency


To establish and meet the building energy and carbon performance standard in design and operation in order to significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions and lower energy use. Guidelines E.1C is required only for New Construction projects that include 20,000 gsf or more of conditioned space and Major Renovation projects that include 20,000 gsf or more of conditioned space and include construction, replacement, or alteration of relevant systems or assemblies.

Required Performance Criteria

  1. Meet the MN SB 2030 Energy and Carbon Standard, information on which can be found at Project submissions, results, and compliance are tracked through the B3 Guidelines Tracking Tool.
  2. Document aggregate totals by energy type for predicted and actual energy use.
  3. Implement submetering and end-load disaggregation.Separately meter and separately report the following:
    1. HVAC system electrical energy use.
    2. Energy use for at least one of the following space conditioning loads: heating, cooling, or ventilation. Metered energy may include natural gas, steam, chilled water, or electricity.
    3. Interior lighting energy use.
    4. Exterior lighting energy use.
    5. Plug loads energy use.
    6. At least one nonregulated load.

Nonregulated loads may include the following: cooking equipment, compressed air systems, specialized equipment in laboratories, hospitals, and manufacturing plants, or nonrefrigeration related process loads. If no such nonregulated loads exist, submeter and report one additional regulated load to fulfill item six above. Regulated loads may include: heating, cooling, ventilation, service water heating, motors, transformers, vertical transportation, refrigeration equipment, computer room cooling equipment and other systems, and other components and processes described in ASHRAE 90.1 sections 5 through 10. [1]

Metering requirements for whole-building electrical use, whole HVAC system, interior and exterior lighting, and plug loads are aligned with ASHRAE 90.1 2013 and ASHRAE 90.1 2016, which are under consideration for the Minnesota State Energy Code in 2020. Going beyond ASHRAE 90.1, compliance with Guideline E.1 requires metering and reporting two additional energy loads—one specifically from the HVAC system(s) and a second regulated or nonregulated load. Meters installed must be capable of reporting data that enable building operators to track energy consumption over time (kWh, BTU, etc.).

This guideline outlines a metering approach intended to permit projects to have actionable data on their energy consumption. The SB 2030 Program has related requirements intended to parallel this metering approach and permit the project to be tracked against its SB 2030 Standard in operation. The requirements under the SB 2030 program include the development of a metering plan and a consideration of how to meter any process loads that are outside of the SB 2030 project boundary. Consult the SB 2030 Metering Requirements listed on the SB 2030 project website for specifics, including the metering-plan format.

[1] ASHRAE 90.1 2016

Recommended Performance Criteria

  1. Advanced submeteringInstall permanent meters capable of recording and transmitting data to a remote location at one-hour intervals (or less), sufficient to either:[1]
    1. Meter and report any individual end-use that represents more than 10% of the predicted annual total energy consumption.
    2. Meter and report separate energy loads, which together account for at least 90% of predicted annual energy consumption by end-use.[2]
  2. Display real-time energy metering information to building occupants.[3]

[1] This guideline is aligned with portions of USGBC, “Energy and Atmosphere Credit: Advanced Energy Monitoring,” LEED Building Design and Construction v.4 and BREEAM, ENE02a.
[2] End-use may include more detailed energy use categories than included under Part C or the metering of additional large building loads sufficient to capture 90% predicted energy consumption.
[3] This guideline is aligned with BREEAM, ENE02b: Energy Monitoring.

Please refer to the SB 2030 project website, at, for more guidance on SB 2030 compliance, including submittal requirements.

During Schematic Design, determine which loads will be submetered and reported separately, and ensure that this list is regularly updated and communicated to the electrical system designers to enable compatibility between electrical distribution and metering layouts.

During the Schematic Design and Construction Document phases, the design team should determine the extent and scope of energy metering, which generally includes the building and any external associated loads (such as lighting). Main end-uses and their percentages of the total consumption should be identified through energy modeling. From this list of end-uses, the project team may also determine the compliance path (if they are pursuing Recommended Criteria D), and the uses to be metered. Appropriate meters for each item should be selected, and installation points identified. At this point, the metering strategy should be reviewed for completeness, usability, cost effectiveness, and contribution to the building’s operational goals. The submetering plan should be documented in a written report or on plan drawings during the Design phase and as part of the as-built set. Operational guidance should be provided for the building operator, and any others who may access or analyze the metered results data. Ensure that this is coordinated with the metering plan requirements of the SB 2030 program and included in the final design submittal.

Metering and reporting building and individual loads makes real-time energy consumption information available for facility managers and operators. This data can be used in efforts to reduce energy use, reduce energy costs, improve overall building operation, and improve equipment operation. The collection of data also allows for verifying utility bills, properly allocating energy costs and budgets, demand-response or load-shedding opportunities, measuring and verifying energy performance, benchmarking building and individual load energy use, identifying efficiency improvement opportunities, and developing annual energy reports.[1] All of these reports and efforts are in support of the goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions generated by Minnesota’s built environment.

The submetering plan should include the following: 5,[2]

  • Goals and objectives, such as verifying, benchmarking, optimizing performance, identifying failing equipment, monitoring occupant awareness and behavior change, or ongoing commissioning.
  • Resources required, including appropriate staff time and training, equipment, and budget during design, construction, and operations phases.
  • Security requirements for metered data.
  • End-uses to be metered.
  • Equipment that best supports metering objectives.
  • SB 2030 metering requirements,[1] including:
    • Schematic metering diagram and narrative.
    • Metered/monitored value list.
    • Any calculations used to convert utility and/or submetered data into values that can be directly compared to the project’s SB 2030 Energy and Carbon Standard.

If pursuing Recommended Guideline D, use whole-building energy modeling to determine which end-uses will be metered. The selection of metered uses and the appropriate compliance path will vary depending on the building’s scale, program, equipment, and systems.

The intent of this recommended criteria is to ensure the building is operating as designed, and to identify potential additional energy savings. The selection of end-uses should support this goal and enable building operators to identify and correct anomalies. Some typical loads to meter include heating, cooling, hot water, lighting, ventilation and pumps, office equipment, in-building transportation, and controls and telecommunications. Special energy uses may also be useful to monitor, including items such as catering kitchens and restaurants, sports facilities, and covered and/or conditioned parking areas.

[1] Full SB 2030 metering requirements available under

[1] Derived from Metering Best Practices: A Guide to Achieving Utility Resource Efficiency, 3.0. PNNL, DOE. 2015.

[2] The Energy Program at Washington State University, a Short Guide to Submetering.


  • 1C: Preliminary metering plan containing elements listed in “Meeting the Guidelines” (this document will also be submitted at later phases as part of the SB 2030 submission).
  • 1D: Preliminary advanced submetering plan, including breakdown of anticipated loads to be metered based on whole-building energy simulation.
  • 1E: Designated system parameters for real-time display, and preliminary location of display.


  • 1C: Metering plan identifying each metered load, each meter type, and methods for sharing meter data.
  • 1D: Advanced submetering plan identifying compliance path chosen, loads included in metering, and methods for sharing meter data.
  • 1E: Plan indicating location of energy information display and updated display parameters.

Final Design:

  • 1C: Final metering plan identifying each metered load, meter type, methods for sharing meter data, and meter manufacturer cut sheets.
  • 1D: Final advanced submetering plan identifying compliance path chosen, loads included in metering, methods for sharing meter data, and meter manufacturer cut sheets.
  • 1E: Plan indicating location of energy information display and manufacturer cut sheets from informational and display system.


  • 1C: Verification of installation and operation of metering equipment and reporting.
  • 1D: Verification of installation and operation of advanced submetering equipment and reporting.
  • 1E: Verification of installation and operation of energy information display.

US Department of Energy: Metering Best Practices: A Guide to Achieving Utility Resource Efficiency, Release 3.0

General Services Administration: Submetering Business Case: How to Calculate Cost Effective Solutions in the Building Context

General Services Administration: Sustainable Facilities Tool – Submetering Wizard