NYC Building Projects Affected by New Energy Code

The Department of Buildings has launched the New York City Energy Conservation Code, part of the city’s plan to cut carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030. Lighting, power, and HVAC in new projects or renovations must comply.

New York Buildings Commissioner Robert LiMandri announced the start of the New York City Energy Conservation Code on July 1, giving notice that lighting, power, and HVAC system in new projects and renovations in America’s largest city must comply with it. The code amends the New York State Energy Conservation Construction Code and is tougher than the state energy code, from which alterations or renovations affecting less than 50 percent of a building system are exempt, according to the department. The new city code is part of the city’s pledge to cut carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

"The creation of the New York City Energy Code is a landmark achievement for this department and a major step forward in making this city more environmentally friendly," LiMandri said. "Our new code requires more buildings to be energy efficient when making repairs, which will help reduce energy consumption, energy costs, and the city's carbon footprint. These new standards will improve the quality of life for generations to come."

The new code sets efficiency standards for:

  • Building envelope: A building's roof, walls, and foundation must have proper insulation and sealing to prevent energy loss. Windows and skylights must be rated to minimize heat transmission.
  • HVAC and water heating equipment: HVAC and service hot water equipment must have proper insulation and sealing at ducts and connecting pipes, as well as controls that minimize energy use.
  • Lighting and power: A building's lighting and power systems must be designed in line with lighting power density standards and have controls that minimize energy use.

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