Buildings are responsible for two-thirds of New York City’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG). Green roofs are a multi-beneficial innovation that can play a valuable role in reducing GHG emissions and cleaning our air and water. Green roofs are now being required by NYC Local Law 94 of 2019 to be installed on NYC buildings.

What is NYC Local Law 94 of 2019?


New York City’s Local Law 94 of 2019, passed under the New York City Climate Mobilization Act, requires the inclusion of a green roofing zone in new construction and for buildings undergoing certain major renovations. This roofing zone must be comprised of a photovoltaic (PV) electricity generating system (Solar Panels) or a green roof. Buildings with greater than 200 square feet of usable roof space must install a minimum of 4kW PV electricity generating system. If a building is unable to install a PV electricity generating system, a green roof system must be utilized. This is part of the “OneNYC 2050” program.


Does it apply to the building I own? 


Requirements of a green roof apply to buildings with:

  • New construction
  • Vertical and horizontal extensions
  • Major modifications to the roof requiring a permit.


Standard roof membrane replacements will not trigger these requirements. Buildings must install green roofs if solar is not feasible, and vice versa. The City may develop additional feasibility criteria beyond those included in the legislation.



How does Local Law 94 benefit me?

Conventional roofs – particularly asphalt roofs – absorb heat throughout the day then releasing it at night, representing heat sinks spread throughout the city. Conventional roofs cause your cooling system to work harder and your bills to be higher. There is a guaranteed return on investment of investing in solar energy, beyond the obvious good that you will be doing for the environment.


Trying to earn a LEED Certification? The benefits of your green roof can help your building be LEED Certified.

Not only this, PV systems’ ability to allow building owners to monetize their roofs and receive low-to-no-cost energy should be well understood. Solar can help building owners comply with other components of the Climate Mobilization Act, as well as the ways in which installing solar panels can benefit their buildings.


For large building owners, Local Law 97 imposes Greenhouse Gas emissions limits on New York City’s buildings, owners will receive penalties for buildings exceeding those limits. Having a green roof can help you comply with Local Law 97.


How do I go about it?

The Cotocon Group has extensive experience with Local Law Compliance, Green Building Certifications, and Sustainable Consulting. Get in touch with us to get a free consultation.

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