Building Energy Use Disclosure Ordinance

The Building Energy Use Disclosure Ordinance (BEUDO) was enacted by the Cambridge City Council on July 28, 2014. The ordinance is a key step in efforts to reduce Cambridge's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Energy use in buildings accounts for about 80% of GHG emissions in Cambridge, with two-thirds of the total related to commercial, institutional, and large multifamily buildings. However, efforts to improve the energy performance of our building stock are hampered by the invisible nature of energy use.

The Ordinance is intended to address this problem by requiring owners of larger buildings to track and report annual energy use to the City, who will publicly disclose the data. Disclosure places the information in the marketplace, where various users such as potential property buyers, tenants, realtors, energy service providers, and others can use the data to help create value for higher energy performing properties. The data will also aid the City and others in planning for higher energy performance in our building stock.

BEUDO is a foundational strategy for various community sustainability initiatives, including the Community Compact for a Sustainable Future, Kendall Square Ecodistrict, and Net Zero Action Plan

The City will review reports as they are submitted, and conduct basic quality assurance checks and work with you to resolve any issues. Eversource continues to facilitate reporting by providing aggregated energy use data for buildings through their Energy Data Portal.

May 1 is the annual deadline to submit BEUDO reports for data covering the previous calendar year.

Please reference our comprehensive Fact Sheet regarding the process for reporting your data. If you have any questions, please contact

Sign Up For Updates

City Council is currently considering amendments to BEUDO which would require large buildings to reduce their emissions over time. To receive updates about BEUDO, please sign up for the email list.

Committee Hearings

The Ordinance Committee will hold a public hearing to continue the April 12th discussion on the proposed amendments to the Building Energy Use Disclosure Ordinance on Wednesday, April 26, 2023 at 3:00pm EST. Information and links to join virtually can be found here

The Ordinance Committee held a public hearing to continue the discussion on the proposed amendments to the Building Energy Use Disclosure Ordinance on Wednesday, April 12, 2023 at 5:30pm EST. Information and documents can be found here. 

Public Forums

City staff hosted a public forum on September 15, 2022 to discuss proposed amendments to BEUDO. 

Presentation slides

Questions and Answerslog of written questions, responses and comments; live-answered questions can be heard by listening to the meeting recording at the appropriate time marker.

View recording on YouTube:


2022 Data Reporting

Notification letters have been sent regarding Covered Properties for data from calendar year 2022, and it is important to note that the City is updating the data reporting process going forward. Please reference this Fact Sheet for a step by step guide regarding reporting your 2022 data.

When reporting energy and water data, the City now requests that building owners take steps to share read-only access of their data [
click here for instructions]. This will replace data submission using an Energy Star Portfolio Manager (ESPM) sharing linkYou will only need to take this action once; if you have questions please contact 

For the 2022 BEUDO reporting year, the due date for submitting energy benchmarking reports will be May 1, 2023.  If any reporters find that they need more time, the City will work with reporters to provide additional time. The City appreciates the efforts of property owners and managers to benchmark and report their annual energy use under the ordinance given the circumstances during the pandemic.


  • The 2022 BEUDO Covered Property Lists are available on the "Who Has to Report" tab.  The lists are sorted by streets address and Assessor's map and parcel number. 
  • Interactive maps have been created to display properties covered by BEUDO and reported benchmarking data.  Interactive maps have been created for reporting years 2016-2021  See the "Data & Reports" tab.

What Does the Ordinance Require?

Building owners subject to the ordinance are required to track their energy (i.e., electricity, natural gas, steam, and fuel oil) and water use and report it to the Community Development Department annually through the U.S. EPA’s ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager.

The web-based tool requires the user to input monthly energy and water data and building information. Portfolio Manager processes the information to show energy use intensity (i.e., energy use per square foot), greenhouse gas emissions, and other metrics. Using Eversource's Energy Reporting Portal is a helpful tool for receiving your information in a clear, easy format that is ready to upload into Portfolio Manager.

The first year of energy and water use data will not be disclosed for new buildings. This will give the City time to work out any problems with private building reporting and also give owners an opportunity to improve their energy performance before the first year of disclosure. 

Who Has to Report?

  • Parcels with non-residential buildings singly or together containing 25,000 square feet or greater
  • Parcels with residential buildings singly or together containing 50 or more units
  • Municipal buildings 10,000 square feet or greater

Covered Properties List

The Community Development Department annually develops lists of buildings that fall on parcels covered by the ordinance. The lists indicate the map-lot number, street address, and unique building identification number for each building. Under the ordinance, these buildings must be benchmarked in ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and reported to the Community Development Department by the annual reporting deadline (May 1). Any questions about these buildings and the applicability of the ordinance should be submitted via

Please note that if you own a property that meets the Ordinance thresholds but is not listed in the covered properties lists, the owner of the buildings must still comply with the ordinance.

Reporting of 2022 Data

Map-Lot Associated Building IDs Associated Addresses MyCambridge Map Link

How to Report Your Building Energy and Water Use Data

This Fact Sheet outlines all below steps in further detail.

  1. Check to see if your property is required to comply with the ordinance.

    Property thresholds are found under the "About the Ordinance" tab and Covered Properties Lists are found under the "Who Has to Report" tab.

  2. Set up an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account and add your properties to your portfolio.

    Make sure to enter your Cambridge Building Energy Reporting ID in the "Unique Identifiers" section under your property details (see below).

  3. Gather your energy and water use data and enter them into Portfolio Manager.

    Eversource is providing whole-building electricity and natural gas data via their energy reporting and disclosure portal. Keep in mind that this process may take up to a week to receive your data.

    All energy sources (electricity, natural gas, oil, steam, etc.) should be reported for the previous calendar year (i.e. January 1, 2020 December 31, 2020 to comply in 2021). Water use data is available via the Cambridge Water Department website. Additional information such a renewable energy purchased, solar installations, etc. should also be entered and will effect your building's energy score.

  4. Connect to the City of Cambridge 

    Instructions are provided in a flier to be mailed to building owners early in 2022. Download the instructions here.

Cambridge Building Energy Reporting ID

It is important to include the building ID number for each building that is reported in your Portfolio Manager account. This is a unique number for each building provided by the City that allows us to verify that reports have been received. Building ID numbers are provided on the covered properties lists (check out the "Who Has to Report" tab). They can also be identified using the Cambridge CityViewer online map. A short video about how to find a building ID number in CityViewer can be viewed by clicking here.

Reporting at the Building Level

Building data should be reported on a one-report-per-building basis if possible, but there are some cases where you might need to "rollup" a property and submit energy and water use data for multiple buildings in a single report. For multifamily properties, if there are multiple buildings on a single parcel, report each building separately only if there are separate meters for each building. For multiple nonresidential buildings on a single parcel with shared meters you may submit one report as an aggregate of all buildings and note each additional building ID in the "Property Notes" section in Portfolio Manager. If you have any questions, please contact

How to Get Building Data

BEUDO Help Desk for Technical Assistance

A help desk has been created to assist building owners, trustees, and their agents in complying with the ordinance. The help desk is operated by ICF International, the City’s technical assistance consultant. Questions can be directed to the help desk by contacting:

The help desk will respond to you as soon as possible and within three business days. The help desk will cover the following types of questions:

  • Issues in using ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager®
  • Accessing energy data and building attribute information
  • General questions about the applicability of the ordinance

BEUDO Help Desk for Technical Assistance

A help desk has been created to assist building owners, trustees, and their agents in complying with the ordinance. The help desk is operated by ICF International, the City’s technical assistance consultant. Questions can be directed to the help desk by contacting:

The help desk will respond to you as soon as possible and within one business day. The help desk will cover the following types of questions:

  • Issues in using ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager®
  • Accessing energy data and building attribute information
  • General questions about the applicability of the ordinance

Gathering Energy and Water Use Data

Entering Data into ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager

Boston-Cambridge EPA Portfolio Manager Workshop February 3, 2015 Presentations:

Eversource Authorization Forms:

Data Disclosure

In accordance with the ordinance, the City began posting BEUDO data for individual properties in 2016. You can view the data on the Cambridge Open Data Portal. The Community Development Department (CDD) is continuing to work with stakeholders on the design of the website and provision of contextual information. CDD analyzes the annual data to understand energy use patterns and trends in Cambridge and issues reports about the aggregated results each year.

Interactive BEUDO Data Maps

Interactive maps have been created to display properties covered by BEUDO and annual reported benchmarking data at the building level.  The data can be filtered by categories.

Summary Report

Every year the City will publish a summary report on the results of that year's reporting cycle. The report contains compliance information as well as statistics on building characteristics, building energy performance and water use.

2015 BEUDO Summary

Municipal Building Reports

Under the ordinance, the City of Cambridge is the first entity that is subject to the building energy use reporting and disclosure requirements. Energy use data is reported for City-owned buildings that contain at least 10,000 square feet of floor area. The Department of Public Works has information on their website about municipal greenhouse gas emissions.  All municipal energy use data reported under BEUDO is disclosed on the City's Open Data Portal.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I get whole-building electricity and natural gas data?
Eversource has set up an online portal where you can request aggregate data for your entire building (both tenant spaces and common spaces).

Do I need to get data from each of the tenants in my building?
If you have four or more meters in your building and no single meter uses more than half of the energy, you will not need to get tenant authorization to obtain whole-building data (tenant and common spaces) from Eversource. If you have less than four meters, have each tenant fill out a tenant authorization form and submit to Eversource via the instructions on the form. If you own several meters in your building but do not have any tenants, contact us for obtaining your whole-building data if you run into issues on the Eversource portal.

Does Cambridge automatically receive my data if I submitted last year?
No, reports must be submitted every year. When you submit your data through our data request link, we get a snapshot of your portfolio at the time you submitted. Each year we'll post a new data request link where you can submit that year's report. 

What exactly do I need to report?
All energy use (electricity, natural gas, steam, oil, etc.) and water use in your entire building(s). Enter monthly data into Portfolio Manager for the entire calendar year. For example, in 2023 you will report whole-building energy and water use for calendar year 2022.

How do I report my energy and water use?
Set up an ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account and enter your energy and water use data as well as your property use details. Once that is complete, send your data to us via the data request link. Be sure to enter your Cambridge Building Energy Reporting ID number so we can identify your building.

Where can I get help with Portfolio Manager?
Contact our help desk at or call 617-250-4205.

What is my Cambridge Building Energy Reporting ID?
Check out the Covered Properties List under the "Who Has to Report" tab. Alternatively, you can use the Cambridge City Viewer to find your building ID (video tutorial here). This is helpful for parcels that contain multiple buildings. Email us if you have trouble finding your building ID.

My property has changed owners, where can I update our contact address?
To update where you receive BEUDO notifications, send an email to Please be sure to include your unique Building ID with your request.

To update your owner address with the official City of Cambridge property database, click here: Assessing Department Mailing Address Change Form. Make sure to share Portfolio Manager login information in the event that owners or property managers change so you continue to have access to your entire energy and water use history.

What is the difference between site and source energy?
Check out this comparison between site and source energy to understand how source energy is calculated from your site energy use (the usage you see on your utility bills).

How do I transfer ownership for a property I’ve benchmarked in Portfolio Manager?

  1. Log into the Property Data Administrator's (PDA/owner) account (only the PDA can transfer)
  2. On the My Portfolio tab, on the left under the 2 charts, click "Transfer Ownership"
  3. Select the Properties that you want to transfer
  4. Select the Person/Account you want to Transfer to. (You must be "connected" to the user to transfer.)
  5. Click Transfer Property.  You'll get a notification that says you have chosen to transfer a property, and if the other person accepts you will no longer have access to this property.
  6. Click Continue to proceed.
  7. The person you are transferring to will get a notification that you are transferring a property to them. They can accept or reject the transfer. If they accept the property will be removed from your account and put into the new account

Note: If you wish to maintain a degree of access to the property without being the owner, please request shared access directly from the new owner.

When you transfer a property to another user, it will not affect all of the people who have access to that property. They will all still have the same access.

How do I benchmark multiple buildings on a single property?

  • If the property contains multiple buildings, each with separate utility meters:
    • Benchmark each building separately.

  • If the property contains multiple buildings that share a single meter:
    • Benchmark each building individually by allocating energy meter data to each building based on gross floor area, as long as the facilities have similar energy use patterns. To ensure accurate benchmarking results, property owners may wish to sub-meter each building in order to track individual building energy performance.
    • If multiple buildings share a heating system, the energy use should be divided among the buildings based on relative usage data, or gross floor area if sub-metered heating data is not available.
    • If you are unable to allocate energy use by building, set up a “campus” property type and enter the shared meter at the “parent” level. Individual meters applying only to a specific building should be entered at the “child” level.

  • If the property contains multiple multifamily residential buildings:
    • Multifamily housing properties are often comprised of several buildings under the same management or ownership. These may be clustered together on one parcel or spread among multiple parcels. To ensure accurate and specific benchmarking results, we encourage benchmarking at the level of the individual building.
    • Properties with three or fewer tenants require tenant permission to release whole-building electric or gas data. More information including the Tenant Authorization and Property Owner Verification forms can be found in the Technical Assistance section of this webpage.
    • Multifamily Housing properties, along with K-12 schools, hospitals, hotels and senior care facilities, are also eligible to benchmark as a campus with individual buildings organized under a parent property account. For more information, please see this FAQ.