NYC Local Law 97 – Beyond Cx, Audits, Rating and Benchmarking

New York City again takes the lead with the City’s new Local Law 97, which establishes an Office of Building Energy and Emissions Performance to regulate and implement laws, policies, protocols, assessment methods, programs and actions such as: “Overseeing implementation of building energy and emissions performance laws and policies for existing buildings, new construction and major renovations; Establishing or administering protocols for assessing annual energy use in buildings; Monitoring buildings’ energy use and emissions, and reviewing building emissions assessment methodologies, building emissions limits, goals and timeframes (among other activities).

Ten Local Laws after LL 87 launched EBCx as a required practice for commercial buildings over 50,000 SF, Local Law 97 is an approach that may just overcome current non-compliance: it’s a fine so steep that compliance will be cheaper.

Now, all newly constructed and existing buildings in New York City over 25,000 SF are limited to emissions based on their size and class, and will pay a fine of $268 for each additional metric ton.

According to an article in International Business Times, “additional fines will be issued if reports are inaccurate, false or simply not submitted, making due diligence, reporting and tracking even more critical to building operations. These fines will be issued annually…technologies such as monitoring-based commissioning (MBCx) systems with built-in commissioning metrics and fault detection analytics are among the solutions that are making these targets easier to achieve.”

Local Law 97 does not supersede, but is related to NYC laws including LL 87 (retrocommissioning and energy audit every 10 years) and LLs 33 and 84 (annual rating and benchmarking of energy and water use). New York may be the first city to institute such an office and a law, but more are bound to follow – read the US Conference of Mayors actions in this edition of The Checklist.

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