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New York City to Grade Buildings on Energy Efficiency Beginning 2020

By Brandon M. James

On January 8, 2018, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio approved Local Law 33 of 2018, the latest initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the energy efficiency of large and mid-sized buildings. Beginning in 2020, city-owned buildings larger than 10,000 square feet and all other buildings exceeding 25,000 square feet will be required to display their energy efficiency grade near each public entrance. Although other cities and states have adopted similar regulations requiring certain property owners to disclose energy usage information to prospective purchasers and tenants, New York City will be the first to require buildings to publicly post this information on-site.

Local Law 33 of 2018 expands upon Local Law 84 of 2009, which presently requires that city buildings exceeding 10,000 square feet and other buildings exceeding 25,000 square feet must submit annual energy and water consumption benchmark data. Based upon the data provided by owners, buildings are placed into one of 21 different groups according to a property’s primary use and subsequently assigned a score by the Energy Star program corresponding to the building’s energy usage as compared to its nationwide peers.

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