A Glimpse of a Cleaner, Lower Energy Future

By Andrew J. Pisani

I often write about the two major energy initiatives impacting buildings – LL 84 for Benchmarking and LL 87 for Energy Auditing and Retro-Commissioning. With the focus usually on what to do next, it’s interesting to take a moment and reflect on what’s happened to date. The news here, is all good.

One of the major, long term initiatives of our City has been the reduction of Green House Gases, and our buildings are the leading emitters of these. You simply can’t have a future with cleaner air without addressing old and inefficient boilers, and the heavy oils that drive them. We’ve benefited from lower natural gas prices, and incentives offered by the City and NY State to encourage conversions.

The first results are back, and they look stellar. The challenge of PlaNYC was a 30% reduction of Green House Gas by the year 2030. With over fifteen years to go, we’re already at 19%. That’s right – our efforts to date have brought us 2/3 of the way to the goal.

To up the stakes, a newer goal for 2050 sets the bar even higher – to reduce Green House Gas by 80%. All I can say is that skeptics should get out of the way, as we can expect future mandates to build on the success we’ve seen so far.

One of the great side effects of energy reduction is the fact that you can really see a difference. In fact, NYC has its cleanest air in over 50 years. Across the country, that puts us at number 4 on the list.

Pretty impressive numbers. You can see why developers are starting to really think seriously about roof decks and patios on their buildings.

As always, our friends at Green Partners can help you navigate through any questions.