Sustainability Services

To help clients achieve their individual carbon reduction and sustainability goals, Luthin Associates offers a suite of services that includes - Benchmarking - Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Inventory -Carbon Challenge Representation and Reporting. Each provides a level of understanding and involvement that demonstrates an organization’s effort to make its business and the world more sustainable places to live and work for now and in the future.

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Benchmarking

To understand how a building’s energy usage compares to others of the same type (e.g., office, school) in the same locale, we “benchmark” it. To do so, Luthin uses EPA’s online Portfolio Manager® (PM) software program, the industry standard required by many large cities, including New York City. Luthin uses the results to develop a historical baseline, against which future comparisons may be made. That data is used to track year-over-year progress from energy efficiency activities.

All buildings in New York City over 25,000 gross square feet (except City-owned buildings) must comply with Local Law 84 (LL84), the City’s benchmarking ordinance.  LL84 requires annual benchmarking wherein data from the prior calendar year must be submitted by April 30th of the following year. Failure to do so may result in a $500 fine for each year no submission is made. In buildings having tenant utility accounts separate from that of the owner, data from all accounts must be included in the benchmarking process.

While many energy consultants offer LL84 compliance services, Luthin Associates goes a step further by analyzing the data to develop a keen understanding of a building’s usage. We recommend the most cost-effective ways to reduce utility expenses and raise your PM score. When a score reaches 75 (out of 100), Luthin will help the owner secure a metal plaque issued by the U.S. EPA that may be mounted at a building’s entrance, attesting to its energy efficiency.

GHG Inventory

As awareness of climate change expands, organizations are being asked – either by the public or their constituents – to disclose their climate impacts. Luthin Associates can help position your organization by quantifying – and helping reduce – those impacts. The first step is an inventory of its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Using the internationally-accepted GHG Protocol Initiative standards, Luthin determines and tracks your emissions from the main contributors to climate change having potentially significant impacts:

  • Carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • Methane (CH4)
  • Nitrous oxide (N2O)
  • Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
  • Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
  • Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOC)

Through careful analysis of the operational boundaries of an organization, Luthin will ensure proper allocation of GHG emissions, avoiding double-counting or inclusion of GHG that is instead the responsibility of other entities (e.g., product vendors).

Other consultants that inventory GHG emissions typically only look at the easily quantified sources: direct combustion (i.e., Scope 1) from boilers and generators, and indirect emissions from consumption of purchased utilities (such as power) and use of company vehicles (i.e., Scope 2). Luthin, however, provides the full-picture by quantifying Scope 3 emissions that stem from refrigerant leakage, product usage such as paints and solvents, employee business travel, and waste disposal. In some facilities, such emissions may account for 10-20% of their climate impact, but may be more easily reduced than the other scopes.

NYC Carbon Challenge Representation & Reporting

To help New York City-based facilities reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the Office of the Mayor of New York developed the NYC Carbon Challenge, a voluntary leadership initiative and public-private partnership. Participants commit to reducing their GHG emissions by 30% or more over ten-years.  Luthin Associates helps its clients navigate this program while achieving their sustainability goals and reducing their bottom line energy costs. The Challenge’s overall goal is to reduce citywide emissions by 80% by 2050.

There are separate challenges within the program for universities, hospitals real estate mangers or owners, hotel and retail customers.  Participants are recognized, promoted, and celebrated for their progress as they pursue energy efficiency improvements, efficient on-site generation, and sustainability initiatives. Each participant agrees to develop a Climate Action Plan using a template and toolkit provided by the City. This task requires setting a facility’s GHG baseline, followed by annual updating to track progress. Luthin will manage all that work for you, making participation a painless and positive experience for your organization.