Climate change is one of the major environmental challenges facing the world. Countries around the world are taking measures to combat climate change and its impact on our existing and future generations.
Here are some important climate change local laws in New York City that you need to look out for:
Solar Panels and Green Roofs
Solar panels and green roofs have become mandatory in New York City for construction projects. The city is working to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change.
Local Law 92 requires the installation of solar panels or a green roof on any newly constructed structure with at least 10 square feet of rooftop space.
Building Energy Efficiency Grade
Building Energy Efficiency Grade, local law 33/95, requires to post a grade on the front of the property. This is an A-F scale based on how much energy your building uses, and less than 20% of buildings in New York City have achieved an A rating.
From November 1, all properties with more than 100 square feet must display their Building Energy Efficiency Grades (from A to F) prominently at ground level near entrances or other visible public spaces.
These grades can be calculated by annual benchmarking reports, which measure everyone’s consumption levels against other similar sized buildings within respective zip codes over time periods ranging from 3 months up to 12 months, depending on what type you need for compliance.
The objective of Local Law 96 is to enable individuals to protect the environment and increase their building’s energy efficiency. With this law, property-assessed clean energy financing will be available at long term, low interest rates to fund upgrades, such as better insulation or more efficient appliances.
Climate Mobilization Act
Enforced in 2019, the Climate Mobilization Act is the answer that New York City residents have long awaited to save their city. The legislation consists of laws designed to ensure significant reductions in carbon emissions and energy consumption.
As per the act, properties owners can be fined (each year) if they don't hit their target goals for energy usage. This fine is based on factors, such as how much energy is used or whether it's a free market or rent-stabilized property.
Audits and Retro-Commissioning
All buildings over 25,000 square feet should create an energy audit and retro-commissioning report once every 10 years. The purpose is to ensure the building's efficiency with regards to its systems, including boilers, pumps, fans, etc.
DOB officials then file the information from these reports for review. They will then work on improving the building if needed so it could potentially be more sustainable in the future.
This translates into lower operating costs while also reducing CO2 emissions drastically as well as having a positive impact on air quality.
Gas Pipe Inspections
The gas pipes in your building are not exempt from inspection. Routine inspections ensure the safety of all occupants, as well as help prevent potential disasters, such as a burst pipe or leaking natural gas. The LOCAL LAW 152 Gas Pipe Inspections require routine inspections to maintain safe buildings and avoid disasters like leaks and bursts.
If you've been thinking about renovating or demolishing your building, there are a few things to consider first. The removal of the boiler may have implications on other systems in place, such as pipes and wiring that connects directly with it. Local law 62/91 requires notification if a major change is occurring within a property, including a building over 25,000 square feet in size.
Local Law Compliance In New York
Complying with the above local laws can become taxing without the right strategy or team to help maintain your building’s energy. Slattery Energy Consulting Group has over 30 years of experience with local law compliancy and will help keep your building up to date on every New York City regulation. Contact Jim Slattery today if you’re interested to learn more.