This article embarks on a comprehensive exploration of Local Law 97. Business owners will gain keen insights into this critical climate law’s key provisions, compliance timeline, and how it relates to building emissions. Importantly, we delve into the law’s direct implications for businesses—from required energy-efficiency reports to penalties for non-compliance and the opportunities available for financing compliance efforts. Stay tuned for practical advice on steps toward Local Law 97 compliance.
Understanding NYC’s Local Law 97
Local Law 97 forms a central part of New York City’s Climate Mobilization Act, which was introduced to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and pave the way towards a more sustainable, low-carbon future. The law establishes emissions limits for many types of buildings in New York City and requires that these limits be met through various energy efficiency measures and renewable energy credits. In essence, it’s an ambitious step toward reducing the city’s carbon footprint.
An Overview of Local Law 97
This sweeping legislation addresses NY’s underlying need to reduce its carbon emissions. The Urban Green Council has noted, for instance, that almost 70% of NYC’s carbon footprint comes from buildings. Under Local Law 97, covered buildings—those that span 25,000 square feet or more—must comply with the set carbon caps; this applies regardless of property type or fuel type used. The legislation further stipulates that these caps will get progressively stricter over time.
Developed and refined by a diverse advisory board, the proposed rules aim to make NYC buildings more energy-efficient. The steps to achieve this include installing energy-efficient systems, optimizing building operations, and utilizing renewable energy. Compliance periods are set too, with the first milestone set in 2024.
The Timeline for Local Law 97 Compliance
Local Law 97 encourages building owners to embark on aggressive energy management strategies. With the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions at its core, this rule will have substantial impacts on building emissions—from commercial units to multifamily buildings. It’s more than just a piece of legislation; it serves as a roadmap, guiding the way towards more energy efficient and less carbon-intensive building operations.
Moreover, the introduction of the carbon coefficient per fuel type will also guide owners towards cleaner energy sources. The law also provides for properties that struggled to achieve emission limitations to show proof of a ‘good faith effort,’ acknowledging the varied capacities of different property types.
The Timeline for Local Law 97 Compliance
The timeline for compliance has been set with four main periods through 2050, each with a stricter emissions limit. Building owners are required to keep tabs of their emissions through the Energy Star Portfolio Manager, a tool that benchmarks energy use. The NYC Accelerator program also offers aid to help building owners meet compliance deadlines.
Stay Compliant With Local Law 97 by Working With React
The Implications of Local Law 97 for Business Owners
Requirement of Energy-Efficiency Reports
Under the new law, building owners must submit an annual report detailing their property’s energy use and emissions, verified by an energy auditor. This Energy Star Portfolio Manager report requires thorough energy audits to ensure transparency and honesty. The goal of such energy management efforts is to identify areas where emissions can be reduced and energy efficiency improved.
Penalties for Non-Compliance to Local Law 97
Business owners should take note, as failure to comply with the legislation results in penalties, determined by the size of the excess emissions. Also, for each year of non-compliance, fines can be levied. The law even includes penalties for failure to submit an accurate report or for making false statements. Thus, creating a culture of conscious, proactive energy management.
Grants and Financing for Local Law 97 Compliance
To facilitate the transition, the city offers financial incentives. For instance, owners of affordable housing units or those buildings with rent-regulated units are eligible to receive incentives. Programs such as the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing come in handy for upgrades that increase energy efficiency and renewable energy use. Working with energy consulting firms like the Cotocon Group can also gear businesses towards compliance.
As observed, Local Law 97 is reshaping the realm of energy efficiency in New York City. Though it may come with challenges, with the right energy management strategies, building owners can meet these requirements while reaping benefits in the long run.
How Business Owners Can Comply With Local Law 97
Introduced as a part of the Climate Mobilization Act, Local Law 97 plays a crucial role in lowering greenhouse gas emissions in New York City. The law imposes emissions limits on most medium to large buildings, contributing to the city’s objective of reaching carbon neutrality by 2050. As a building owner, understanding the proposed rules, emission limitations, and compliance periods of Local Law 97 is pivotal for operating in good faith.
Scope of Local Law 97
Local Law 97 applies to covered buildings that exceed 25,000 square feet. This includes certain property types like multifamily buildings, commercial edifices, and certain rent-regulated units. Managed by an advisory board, the law calculates carbon caps through the carbon coefficient for each fuel type used, making it important for owners to evaluate their building operations.
Strategies for Compliance
Energy efficiency and management strategies can help reduce a building’s carbon effect. Building owners can use the Energy Star Portfolio Manager and enlist the services of a professional energy auditor to conduct an energy audit. This data can help create a plan to decrease emissions. Further, owners can invest in renewable energy credits or purchase green power for compliance.
Support From NYC Accelerator
The NYC Accelerator program offers technical assistance to help building owners comply with Local Law 97. This includes providing guidance on how to reduce a building’s carbon emissions and improve energy efficiency. Plus, NYC Accelerator also guides owners on how to receive incentives like PACE financing for green building projects.
Observing Annual Reporting
Building owners are required to submit an annual report to the Department of Buildings, detailing their greenhouse gas emissions. The portfolio manager tool, guided by an energy auditor, can be used to calculate these emissions. Non-compliance with the annual report can result in penalties.
Financial Incentives for Compliance
Complying with Local Law 97 is not just a legal obligation but an economic opportunity. A PACE loan can finance projects geared towards improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions. Moreover, affordable housing buildings can receive incentives for making necessary upgrades and setting a lower carbon footprint.
Partnering With Experts
To navigate the implementation and compliance of Local Law 97, building owners can benefit from partnering with experts, such as the Cotocon Group. These experts can assist with everything from understanding emission limits to applying for financial incentives, guiding owners through the complexities of the rules.
Addressing Rent Regulated Units
Under Local Law 97, rent regulated units are assessed differently. For these property types, alternative measures such as an energy audit are available. These give owners additional flexibility in their compliance strategy and help ensure that the cost of improvements doesn’t fall on tenants.
Let’s Get Your HVAC Up to Standards
React Industries specializes in not only Local Law 97 compliance but also optimizing your HVAC systems. With our services, your commercial spaces will be comfortable, energy-efficient, and cost-effective. Contact us today to take the first step towards a more sustainable and compliant future.