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Boulder Marijuana Cultivation Facilities Energy Requirements

Boulder Marijuana Cultivation Facilities Energy Requirements

Marijuana Cultivation Facilities' Energy Use Reporting and Offset Requirements

Feb. 5, 2019 City Council adopted marijuana ordinance revisions - ONLY Licensed medical marijuana and recreational marijuana cultivation facilities are required to report their energy usage to the City of Boulder (Chapter 6-14-9(g) and Chapter 6-16-9(g)) and offset 100 percent of their electricity use (Chapter 6-14-8(i) and Chapter 6-16-8(i)).

A new Energy Impact Offset Fund option will help the city fund increased local renewable energy and keep revenue local. 

All licensed marijuana cultivation facility owners must provide the following information: 

  1. Proof of records confirming energy use (electricity and natural gas) tracking by using the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager (ESPM) FREE online tool, and;
  2. Proof of records showing how 100 (one hundred) percent of your licensed facility’s electricity use is offset by one or a combination of the following:
  • On-site installation of renewable energy;
  • Participation in a verified solar garden
  • Subscribing to Renewable Connect (Xcel Energy's solar garden)* and/or by
  • Purchasing offsets through a city's Energy Impact Offset Fund.

The city has approved the new Xcel Energy solar garden, Renewable Connect. Please check  Xcel's website details for enrollment times and availability.   

Report your facility's energy use

Register your licensed marijuana cultivation facility in ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager
For your City of Boulder marijuana cultivation license or license renewal, you must report your facility's energy use through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager (ESPM). The city has step-by-step how-to guide pdf for medical and recreational marijuana business owners to report your energy use in Portfolio Manager.

If your cultivation facility has its own electric meter(s) and you pay your own electricity bill through Xcel Energy, you can access a service that Xcel offers to upload energy use data and automatically upload energy use into your ESPM account. For compliance with energy reporting, your facility's energy use must be shared with the city through ESPM. However, you only need to "share" your information through ESPM to the city once.

Request Xcel to “push” your energy use into your ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account through its Energy Benchmarking portal. If you have questions, please contact Xcel’s Business Solutions Center:  1-800-481-4700  (Monday - Friday 8 a.m - 5 p.m.)

Transfer an existing ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account to a new owner
If you are selling your City of Boulder marijuana license and you have an existing ESPM account for this facility, it's your responsibility to transfer this existing account to the new owner. Here are the  instructions pdf on how to transfer the ESPM account to someone new. 

Need Help?

If you are requesting a new license and need assistance setting up an ESPM account to report your facility's energy use data, contact a Partners for a Clean Environment (PACE) business sustainability advisor at 303-441-1300 or [email protected] Another service is the city's ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Help desk at 844-811-8785 or email them at [email protected]

Offset your facility's electricity use

Each marijuana cultivation facility must have one electricity offset form confirming its offset selection to achieve compliance on an annual basis. Only if you are changing your offset selection will you need to resubmit a new form. If you submitted a form identifying a combination of two offset options, the city needs proof of on-site solar or a subscription of a solar garden kWh generation.

If you still need to submit a form for any of your Boulder licensed marijuana facilities, please do so as soon as possible. If you are not sure if you’ve submitted a form, please contact program manager to verify.

In 2018, for anyone that needs assistance with ESPM, the city has hired a consultant group to provide a live helpdesk to support Boulder businesses or property owners with the online tool. 

Offset Cost Calculations: Your offset cost will be calculated by adding together six months of electricity consumption from the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager account and multiplying that number by the kilo-watt hour cost, per facility. The offset price is $0.0207 per kWh.

Offset Billing Dates:  Each licensed facility that opts into the EIOF will receive an invoice for their offset cost twice a year.  

Below is the electricity offset invoicing schedule: Note - payment process has changed. 

Invoice date sent

Invoicing for time of electricity used

Payments to City of Boulder
Checks made out to: City of Boulder EIOF

January 2018

Jan 1- June 30, 2017
(1 st half)

Mail check/cashier’s check 
City of Boulder                 
Attn: Accounts Receivable EIOF                          P.O. Box 791,                                                Boulder, CO 80306-0791

Drop off check in person (no cash payment will be accepted):
City of Boulder Brenton Building-1st floor, 1136 Alpine Ave, Boulder, CO 80304

(Part of the old Broadway Boulder Hospital site. Off Broadway, turn on North Street, then take the second driveway on the right side of street to find ample, free customer parking in front of our new location, the Brenton Building) 

PLEASE NOTE: Include the bottom portion of your invoice with payment. 
Checks made out to: City of Boulder EIOF

April 2018

July 1 – Dec. 31, 2017
(2 nd half)

October 2018

Jan 1 – June 30, 2018
(1 st half)

April 2019

July 1 – Dec. 31, 2018
(2 nd half)

October 2019

Jan 1 – June 30, 2019
(1 st half)

Frequently asked questions

When will I have to pay my facility’s offsets?

The city is now administering the Energy Impact Offset Fund accounts payable and receivable processes. The city will issue EIOF invoices at the end of April for the second half of the previous year and October for the first half of the current year. Issued offset invoices have a 30 day payment term, unless you make arrangements with the city to be put on a payment plan. 

What if I’m a newly annexed marijuana facility with a new city license?

Annexed marijuana cultivation facilities will pay offsets starting in November 1, 2018, as this was the annexation deadline for city licensing. Each cultivation facility will be offsetting their electricity use by one or a combination of the three allowable methods as noted on the website above.  

Because I was licensed in Boulder County and I have an eGauge energy monitoring device that tracks my energy use, what do I have to do now for the City of Boulder energy reporting requirement?

The city and county’s energy use reporting are different in the tools we use to collect energy use data. The city uses the free on-line tool, ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, so the sooner you register your facility into the ESPM tool, the easier it will be on-going.  To get started, please access the "Report your facility's energy use" tab above or if you need further assistance or want to better understanding of the difference in energy reporting contact the program manager.


For questions about these requirements, contact the City of Boulder Climate + Sustainability Division, Elizabeth Vasatka at [email protected] or 303-441-1964.