What is Local Law 97?

of NY building emissions must be lowered by 2023
May 2024
due date to submit greenhouse gas emissions report
NYC buildings are affected
of NY building emissions must be lowered by 2024
*Metrics provided by nyc.gov

Local Law 97 FAQs

New York City is taking ambitious steps to promote sustainability with the passage of Local Law 97, part of Mayor de Blasio’s Green New Deal. This law requires buildings 25,000 gross square feet or larger (or two separate structures exceeding 50,000sqft combined) held in the same tax lot to drastically reduce their collective greenhouse gas emissions by 40% in 2030 and reach a citywide reduction goal of 80% overall by 2050.

This local law summary is provided by Urban Green Council.

Last updated February 2023. This summary is for informational purposes only. For full details on the law and questions related to compliance, please contact the City of New York.

How does this law affect me?

As a building owner, you will be responsible for reporting your property's annual greenhouse gas emissions due May 1, 2025 and every May after. If your building exceeds the greenhouse gas emissions limit, you must add technology to offset your energy usage or pay a large fine. It’s important to note that while there are some upfront costs to save energy, in the long run, these changes will save you money in operation costs and help preserve the environment.

What are the penalties?

From 2025 onwards, those responsible for managing buildings who do not submit their reports on energy consumption will face severe penalties and fines. Buildings that surpass their annual emissions targets face sizable penalties: up to $268 for every carbon unit the building exceeds its limit. It pays to keep track and stay within your limits!

What are the benefits?

By investing in energy management strategies and solutions, your business can enjoy numerous long-term benefits. These include:

  • Reduced carbon footprint and contribution to a cleaner and healthier environment
  • Lower operating expenses, resulting in improved profits
  • Increased value and marketability of properties due to high-performance equipment
  • Improved tenant satisfaction and decreased turnover through increased comfort and lower rents

What are my next steps to be compliant?

ReWyre makes it easy to meet the compliance of Local Law 97. Building owners would be prudent to improve the selected areas of their buildings, such as:

Solar Panels

Solar panels are devices that use the sun’s radiation to generate electricity. Installing a solar power system is an effective way to reduce emissions and save money.

Installing a 300 kW solar power system can be an incredible investment. According to the latest data from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, "solar power systems in the size range of 100-500 kW have an average price of $2.44/W in New York." With an electricity price of 20 cents/kWh, it produces an output of 420,000 kWh/year - saving you $84,000 in energy costs.

But that's not all: it also helps you avoid Local Law 97 penalties, which amount to $32,526 in savings per year - bringing the total economic benefit to a whopping $116,526 annually! This means that with just the electricity savings alone, your system will pay itself back within 6.4 years; however when Local Law 97 penalties are taken into account this payback period is reduced to 4.6 years! To top it off, quality branded solar panels have a service life of more than 25 years – making the payback period only a small fraction of their lifespan.

Efficient HVAC Solutions

HVAC is an acronym for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. It’s a system of machines that can regulate the temperature within various residential and commercial buildings.

Reducing greenhouse gasses has one simple solution - reducing energy usage. Local Law 97 encourages this, and in large apartment or office buildings, and updating your HVAC to be internet enabled and energy-efficient  is a great way to do it. This can not only help with cutting down on emissions, but also reduce heating costs, thus saving money.

In New York, residential building owners must comply with the New Minimum Apartment Temperature Requirements stating, "all residential building owners are required to maintain indoor temperatures at 68 degrees when outdoor temperatures fall below 55 degrees during the day. Indoor temperatures must also be a minimum of 62 degrees overnight, regardless of outdoor temperatures.”

Automating the temperature with efficient HVAC solutions to exactly meet these requirements will save an abundance of energy.

Smart Thermostat

A regular thermostat lets you adjust the temperature in your home from a control panel on the wall, but a smart thermostat offers so much more. With these Wi-Fi-enabled devices, you can control your heating and cooling remotely and customize it to fit your building or home needs. For instance, you can program it on and off based on when you’re away or home, what areas of the house are occupied and what temperatures are comfortable throughout the day.
 This one step could help you get closer to meeting Local Law 97 compliance.

What’s great about smart thermostats is that they don’t just regulate your home temperature; they also provide insight into how much energy it takes to keep things cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Plus, they compare your AC/heater use with other households in the neighborhood so you get an idea of how much energy you’re saving (or not).

No need to put together a custom schedule either —let the thermostat do its job for a few weeks, and it’ll start to learn your habits and preferences. You can always manually adjust temperatures using the app for extra comfort.

Building Automation System

Building Automation systems are a large part of green building programs worldwide, making it a critical factor in energy reduction. To help reduce energy, building automations cover lighting systems, HVAC systems, Leak detection, occupancy detection and more.

"Building automation systems can boost heating and cooling efficiency more than 20 percent and energy use for lighting, appliances, etc., 8 percent.Across the world, adoption ranges from close to 0 percent in some developing regions to over 75 percent in high-income countries.Substantially expanding adoption—at a net first cost of US$287.70–393.35 billion—could save building owners US$2.27–3.42 trillion in operating costs and avoid 9.55–14.01 gigatons of carbon dioxide emissions by 2050." Source: Project Drawdown - Advocacy Group for Advance Climate Solutions and Balance

Energy Storage Management

Buildings that utilize energy effcient technology such as solar panels will gain the most energy during the summer. This energy can be stored in a battery to use during the winter months when energy from the sun is not readily available.

Energy storage is also be a way to sell back your excess power to the grid which will work well to offset the costs associated with solar power.

Local Law 97 pushes for NY buildings to lower their energy consuption accross the board and storing energy gained from sustainable sources is critical for building owners to stay within the allotted carbon caps.

Please fill out this form to get access to energy- efficient technology that will help you gain local law 97 compliance.

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