About PEER

Performance Excellence in Electricity Renewal, also known as PEER, is a rating system that measures and improves power system performance and electricity delivery systems.

It helps industry stakeholders dramatically improve system performance by providing operators with a framework for continuous improvement and performance assessment. Modeled after the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program for buildings, PEER provides energy professionals with a comprehensive understanding of how to define, specify, and assess sustainable power to buildings.

PEER certification is administered exclusively by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), the only independent credentialing entity qualified to administer project certification.

What is PEER?

  • PEER is the nation’s first comprehensive, consumer-centric, data-driven system designed to measure performance and improve the regulation, design and operation of sustainable power. PEER’s standards mimic LEED to create systemic transformation toward sustainability.
  • PEER is the result of a collaborative effort between the USGBC and Bob Galvin, formerly of Motorola, to address urgently needed power industry reforms. Following the 2003 Northeast blackout, it became clear that electricity is crucial to individual communities, and a lack of it can have a profound, negative impact on the economy. At the time, the power industry was in need of a major transformation that policy changes alone could not address.
  • Receiving PEER certification confirms improvement and sustainability for power systems. It provides a checklist to ensure that sustainability performance goals are being met. Like LEED, PEER accelerates transformation in the marketplace by providing a framework for three-year minimum project grid improvement plans that lead to fundamental change.


  • PEER improves the long-term quality of life in communities by improving the reliability of electricity systems. With outdated electricity systems, electricity is lost through conversion and waste, and these costs are passed onto consumers with poor power quality, costing U.S. facilities more than $200 billion dollars per year. PEER quantifies the financial value of a sustainable electric system by effectively highlighting financial bottom-line benefits.
  • PEER standards incorporate distributed generation and on-site power generation, which results in less energy lost. It further supplements a reduction and optimization of the energy infrastructure including power lines, and plants.
  • PEER helps professionals spearheading sustainable energy delivery initiatives within the electricity sector by cutting economic losses caused by, poor energy reliability, poor power quality, and energy inefficiency.

PEER criteria

  • PEER takes a comprehensive look at power system performance by setting standards, benchmarking against up to 68 sustainable performance criteria and evaluating performance across four outcome categories to address a wide range of customer concerns and design requirements:
    1. Reliability and resiliency: This category ensures the reliable delivery of electricity and reduces injuries, interruptions and power quality issues.
    2. Energy efficiency and environment: Environmental responsibility is increasingly becoming an expectation for both companies and consumers in all sectors. This category assesses the environmental impact of electricity generation and transmission, encouraging the adoption of clean, efficient energy.
    3. Operational effectiveness: Consumers expect high-quality service from their electricity provider at competitive rates. This category leverages value gap analysis to identify and eliminate waste.
    4. Customer contribution: As automation, intelligent control and distributed resources are more readily available, customers become an increasingly valuable resource to grid operators. This category assesses customer contribution to grid service, investment and innovation.

Each category includes a set of prerequisites – requirements that must be fulfilled in order to qualify for certification – and credits with which project teams earn points.

Projects that meet all prerequisites and achieve the required number of points are awarded PEER certification in recognition of outstanding performance. The PEER criteria are designed to reward implementation of industry best practices and encourage the adoption of new, innovative strategies.

PEER projects

PEER provides a valuable framework that can be used to assess new designs and developments, long-term improvement plans, and existing project performance. In this version of PEER, the projects may be categorized as one of three project types:

  • City: Typically, these are public projects with a large variety of customers. Examples include municipal utilities, special districts within a city, or citywide projects within an investor owned utility territory.
  • Campus: Typically, these are privately owned or operated projects that have few customers but include distribution to multiple buildings and loads. Examples include college campuses, industrial parks and facilities, military bases, and large buildings.
  • Supply: Typically, these are privately owned or operated projects that supply locally generated power to downstream customers or loads. These projects usually have few customers or customer connection points and do not have control over the distribution system or the customer. Examples include combined heat and power plants for industrial facilities and third-party suppliers for city and campus projects.

Updated April 2016