Forum on New Energy Laws

When New York City passed its own Green New Deal earlier this year, building owners were tasked with figuring out how to comply with the new law within the given timeframe.

The bill that affects them the most is Intro. 1253, now called Local Law 97 of 2019. The law requires owners of buildings larger than 25,000 square feet to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030, and 80 percent by 2050.

Emissions are calculated by the amount of electricity, natural gas and fuel oil used in the building.

To be in compliance, building owners must submit an emissions intensity report, stamped by a registered design professional, every year starting in 2025. If they fail to comply, they will face substantial fines.

The new policy is expected to impact more than 57,000 buildings across the city.
To help prepare and guide property owners through the process, the Queens Chamber of Commerce’s Energy and Environmental Committee recently recreated a Gold Standard Task Force.

The task force is comprised of experts and professionals from some of the industry’s leaders, including JouleSmart Solutions, Sol Alliance, Radiatorlabs and the Energy Economic Development Corp.

According to Marshall Haimson, president of E-Capital Development and the co-chair of the committee, these experts can work with both large and small building owners on single or multiple measures.

They will identify best practices to help property owners understand what needs to be done, and guide owners to cost-effective solutions with little or no out-of-pocket expenses.

Additionally, they will help building owners be in compliance with the new emission standards –– thus benefiting the environment and saving on operating expenses in the long run.

“We hand-selected the top people in those sectors,” Haimson said. “That’s who we’re bringing to the table.”

To help advise owners on next steps, the Gold Standard Task Force is hosting its inaugural workshop, called “How NYC Building Owners Will Cash In on New Environmental Standards,” on Wednesday, July 31, at the Queens Chamber office.

Haimson said they will discuss the impact of the new local law. The negative impact, he said, is potential fines. But the positive impact is the opportunity to dramatically improve operational costs while still being in compliance.

“We’ll have how-to’s on how to finance these projects,” he said.

The workshop will also go over how to produce measured, verified, guaranteed and insured greenhouse gas reductions and economic returns.

Haimson said this will be the first in a series of monthly or bi-monthly workshops hosted by the task force.

“We’re looking to reach as many building owners as possible,” he said.

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