Initial On-Site Fossil Fuel Combustion Limits Now in Effect

Initial On-Site Fossil Fuel Combustion Limits Now in Effect

By Katherine Baerga

As part of the city’s commitment to sustainability, on-site fossil fuel combustion limits have gone into effect, prohibiting the use of fossil fuels for heating and service hot water (Service HW) in new buildings. Nearly 40% of the city’s carbon emissions come from furnaces, boilers, and hot water heaters that burn fossil fuels. Space heating and hot water electrification will reduce these emissions.

Starting January 1, 2024, applications for New Buildings and New Buildings with Existing Elements to Remain that are less than seven stories (except for Service HW) or classified as Group R-3 (one- and two-family homes) must comply with Local Law 154 of 2021. The law also affects certain appliances, including domestic cooking ranges and clothes dryers.

Local Law 154 Implementation Schedule

Local Law 154, which specifically prohibits the on-site combustion of fuels that emit more than 25 kilograms of carbon dioxide per million British thermal units of energy or more, has a phased implementation plan.

Future compliance dates are as follows:

  • December 31, 2024 – NYC School Construction Authority projects
  • December 31, 2025 – Affordable Housing* less than 7 stories (excluding Service HW)
  • July 2, 2027 – All occupancies (including Service HW)
  • December 31, 2027 – Affordable Housing* 7 stories or taller (including Service HW)

Local Law 154 Exceptions

Buildings that meet the following exceptions are not required to comply with Local Law 154 restrictions:

  • Buildings used by a regulated utility for electricity or steam generation
  • Buildings operated by the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for sewage or food waste treatment
  • Specific spaces within buildings that require fossil fuels for:
    • Manufacturing
    • Laboratories
    • Laundromats
    • Hospitals and crematoria
    • Commercial kitchens
    • Emergency or standby power

If you have questions about how Local Law 154 affects your projects and/or properties, please contact Metropolis Group at 212.233.6344.