02 Jul Making a Greener New York City – Green New Deal
Roughly 50,000 buildings over 25,000 square feet in size are responsible for an astounding 40 percent of GHG emissions from New York City’s building sector.
The New York City Council passed the Climate Mobilization Act, which is an ambitious package of legislation to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 80% by 2050. This “Green New Deal” will take effect in 2024 and is comprised of eleven pieces of legislation, but the centerpiece is the carbon emissions limits law for large NYC buildings (Local Law 97/2019).
This ambitious act of “green” legislation is aimed at improving energy efficiency over the next several decades by reducing greenhouse gas emissions from large buildings — the source of nearly 70 percent of New York City’s total greenhouse gas emissions. The act is a bold step in the city’s fight against climate change, and the first of its kind to include measures that will affect existing properties. But with a number of new laws set to take effect as early as 2024, building owners and developers should not wait to familiarize themselves with what’s to come.
New York City is not only taking steps to adhere to the Paris Climate pact, it is frontloading the most significant greenhouse gas reductions for the coming decade, before it’s too late. The City is going after the largest source of emissions in New York by mandating that all large existing buildings cut their emissions – a global first.
Requiring that buildings do their part to meet 80 x 50’s GHG reduction goals, Local Law 97 outlines two introductory compliance phases, with an initial period of 2024-2029. While some Climate Mobilization Act specifics are set to be determined by the new department, initial compliance limits are fairly rigid, and are set to target those New York City buildings with the highest emissions intensity levels. Limits for the second compliance period of 2030-2034, meanwhile, are in line with the City’s interim emissions reduction goal of 40% by 2030 (40 x 30). The Office of Building Energy and Emissions Performance will have some discretion in determining the compliance path and the carbon calculation process through the rulemaking process, but the 40% reduction limit is explicit in the legislation, with a requirement that any adjustments to emissions limits be at least as stringent as those laid out in the bill.
Does Local Law 97 apply to my building?
The bill broadly applies to buildings 25,000 square feet and larger, or to two or more buildings on the same tax lot together exceeding 50,000 square feet.
The NYC Benchmarking Law requires annual energy and water consumption data to be submitted for public disclosure annually by May 1st by owners of buildings that meet the criteria outlined in the law. This increases transparency regarding energy and water usage – the first step for building owners and tenants in making their buildings operate more efficiently.
Local Law 133 of 2016 amended the Administrative Code of the City of New York by expanding the list of buildings required to benchmark for energy and water efficiency. In addition, as of October 31, 2016, the term ‘covered building’ shall not include real property, not more than three stories, consisting of a series of attached, detached or semi-detached dwellings, for which ownership and the responsibility for maintenance of the HVAC systems and hot water heating systems is held by each individual dwelling unit owner, and with no HVAC system or hot water heating system in the series serving more than two dwelling units (also known as ‘garden style’ apartments).
NYC Local Law 84 (LL84)
Owners of large buildings in NYC measuring more than 50,000 square feet, or groups of buildings on a single lot larger than 100,000 square feet, are required to annually measure, track, and report their energy, gas, water, and fuel consumption.
Owners of large buildings in NYC measuring more than 50,000 square feet, or groups of buildings on a single lot larger than 100,000 square feet, are required to annually measure, track, and report their energy, gas, water, and fuel consumption. This process is referred to as benchmarking. Since these reports are made available to the public, it was anticipated that they would generate energy efficiency and a greener usage of resources.
Another important change to Local Law 84 exempts owners of “garden apartments” from being required to benchmark. As of October 31, 2016, the list of buildings required to benchmark excludes all residential properties that consist of three stories or less, for which ownership and maintenance responsibility of the HVAC and hot water heating systems are held by each individual dwelling unit owner. In simpler terms, if there is no HVAC system or hot water heating system in the series of dwellings that serve more than two units, the properties are exempt from benchmarking.
As part of PlaNYC 2030, your building’s reported ENERGY STAR benchmarking score will soon be part of the public record. The Cotocon Group can manage the LL84 requirements and start you saving money on building operations, making your building more competitive.
All these laws are made to reduce the overall Green House Gas emissions from the buildings in New York City. If you need to know more about Climate Mobilization Act, Get in Touch with us!