Greenhouse Gas Emission Reporting


Local Law 97 of 2019, passed by the City Council as part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Green New Deal, is an unprecedented commitment to increase the sustainability of buildings, the single-largest source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in New York City. The law became effective on November 15, 2019.

Local Law 97 will further the goal of achieving a 40 percent reduction in aggregate greenhouse gas emissions from covered buildings by calendar year 2030 and an 80 percent reduction in citywide emissions by calendar year 2050.

A covered building means, with some exceptions, (i) a building that exceeds 25,000 gross square feet, or (ii) two or more buildings on the same tax lot that together exceed 50,000 gross square feet, or (iii) two or more buildings held in the condominium form of ownership that are governed by the same board of managers and that together exceed 50,000 gross square feet.

Further details regarding emissions limits, as well as information on buildings that are exempt from Local Law 97 requirements can be found below. Local Law 97 of 2019 was amended by Local Law 147 of 2019. The amended version of these laws can be reviewed in §28-320 of the Administrative Code.


Building GHG Emission Reporting

Greenhouse Gas Emission limits are established on a square foot basis by the occupancy of a covered building. For a covered building with spaces classified in more than one occupancy group (see Chapter 3 of the NYC Building Code for Use and Occupancy Classifications), the annual building emissions limit is determined by the sum of the calculated values from Occupancy Groups 1 through 10, as applicable for each space and time frame.


Building emissions limits for calendar years 2024 through 2029:

 

Occupancy group

Emissions Intensity Limit (tCO2e/sf)

multiplied by

Corresponding Gross Floor Area (GFA) in sf

1

A

0.01074

X

GFA

2

B (other than item 6)

0.00846

X

GFA

3

E and I-4

0.00758

X

GFA

4

I-1

0.01138

X

GFA

5

F

0.00574

X

GFA

6

B civic administrative facility for emergency response services, B non-production laboratory, Group B ambulatory health care facility, H, I-2 and I-3

0.02381

X

GFA

7

M

0.01181

X

GFA

8

R-1

0.00987

X

GFA

9

R-2

0.00675

X

GFA

10

S and U

0.00426

X

GFA



Building emissions limits for calendar years 2030 through 2034:

 

OCCUPANCY GROUP

Emissions Intensity Limit (tCO2e/sf)

multiplied by

Corresponding Gross Floor Area (GFA) in sf

1

A

0.00420

X

GFA

2

B (other than item 6)

0.00453

X

GFA

3

E and I-4

0.00344

X

GFA

4

I-1

0.00598

X

GFA

5

F

0.00167

X

GFA

6

B civic administrative facility for emergency response services, B non-production laboratory, Group B ambulatory health care facility, H, I-2 and I-3

0.01330

X

GFA

7

M

0.00403

X

GFA

8

R-1

0.00526

X

GFA

9

R-2

0.00407

X

GFA

10

S and U

0.00110

X

GFA


Building GHG emission limits for calendar years beyond 2034 will be established by the Department through rulemaking, with limits of not more than 0.0014 tCO2e/sf/yr.

*tCO2e is a metric ton of Carbon Dioxide equivalent, as defined in LL97.

The Department’s requirements for the annual GHG Emission report are currently in development.  At this time, as a proxy, owners should review their GHG emission results as determined by the Energy Star Portfolio Manager (ESPM) tool, which is used for reporting their annual energy benchmarking as required by Local Law 84 of 2009.  More information on the requirements for annual energy benchmarking may be found on our Benchmarking page.


Compliance

By May 1, 2025, and by May 1 of every year thereafter, the owner of a covered building must file an annual Greenhouse Gas Emission report showing that, for the previous calendar year, such building is either:

  • In compliance with the applicable building emissions limit established in §28-320.3 of the Administrative Code; or

  • Not in compliance with such applicable building emissions limit, along with the amount by which such building exceeds such limit.


Adjustments

Local Law 97 provides three pathways for adjusting emissions limits for buildings that meet certain requirements. At this time, owners may apply for adjustments to building emissions limits for excess emissions due to a special circumstance or adjustments for not-for-profit hospital and healthcare facilities (Sections 320.8 and 320.9 of the Administrative Code).  Details on qualifying for an adjustment, technical documentation necessary for the application, and tips on completing the application are outlined in the LL97 Adjustments Application Filing Guide. Adjustments to building emissions limits pursuant to Section 320.7 are not being accepted by the Department at this time.

Adjustment for Excess Emissions Due to a Special Circumstance
Some buildings have special circumstances that may increase their energy usage and may qualify to apply for an adjustment to their emissions limits. To be eligible, the 2018 emissions must exceed the 2024 limit for the building by at least 40%, due to a special circumstance in the building, and the owner must be able to demonstrate that the building has energy performance that is equivalent to a similar building that would comply with the 2014 New York City Energy Conservation Code.

Applications for buildings eligible for this adjustment are due by June 30, 2021.

Adjustments for Not-for-profit Hospital and Healthcare Facilities
An adjustment to the building emissions limit for both 2024-2029 and 2030-2034 may be granted to not-for-profit hospitals and healthcare facilities. Not-for-profit classification includes spaces owned or occupied by a not-for-profit hospital or healthcare facility.

Applications for buildings eligible for this adjustment are due by July 21, 2021.

How to file for an adjustment

Adjustment applications are submitted through DOB NOW Safety. See the Service Update for details on how to open an application for an adjustment in DOB NOW.

LL97 Adjustments Application Filing Guide
To assist Registered Design Professionals and Owners, the LL97 Adjustments Filing Guide covers the technical requirements for completing an adjustment application. Both adjustments for excess emissions due to a special circumstance (Article 320.8) and adjustments for not-for-profit hospitals and healthcare facilities (Article 320.9) are covered in the Filing Guide.

EN97A Calculations Workbook and Instructions
Each application must be accompanied by an excel workbook containing the necessary information about the building’s usage, energy consumption and emissions, the EN97A workbook and instructions on how to complete this workbook.

Questions on adjustments applications should be submitted to GHGEmissions@buildings.nyc.gov. Questions about the DOB NOW portal should be directed to www.nyc.gov/dobhelp.


Extensions for Certain Income-Restricted Housing

Certain covered buildings have an extended period of time in which to comply with Local Law 97. These buildings include those:

  • That are owned by a limited-profit housing company organized under article 2 of the private housing finance law, and

  • That contain one or more dwelling units for which occupancy or initial occupancy is restricted based upon the income of the occupant or prospective occupant thereof as a condition of a loan, grant, tax exemption, tax abatement, or conveyance of property from any state or local governmental agency or instrumentality pursuant to the private housing finance law, the general municipal law, or section 420-c of the real property tax law.

Such covered buildings are exempted from the annual building emissions limits set forth in section 28-320.3.1 and 28-320.3.2 and from any applicable reporting requirements.

Commencing January 1, 2035, such covered buildings shall be subject to the annual building emissions limits established pursuant to sections 28-320.3.4 and 28-320.3.5 and any applicable reporting requirements.


Violations for Non-compliance

Beginning in 2025, an owner of a covered building who has submitted a report pursuant to section 28-320.3.7 which indicates that such building has exceeded its annual building emissions limit will be liable for a civil penalty of not more than an amount equal to the difference between the building emissions limit for such year and the reported building emissions for such year, multiplied by $268.


Exceptions to Covered Buildings

The law exempts the following buildings, even if they otherwise meet the definition of a covered building as indicated above:

  • An industrial facility primarily used for the generation of electric power or steam.

  • Real property, not more than three stories, consisting of a series of attached, detached or semi-detached dwellings, for which ownership and the responsibility for maintenance of the HVAC systems and hot water heating systems is held by each individual dwelling unit owner, and with no HVAC system or hot water heating system in the series serving more than 25,000 gross square feet, as certified by a registered design professional to the department.

  • A city building.

  • A housing development or building on land owned by the New York city housing authority

  • A rent regulated accommodation.

  • A building whose main use or dominant occupancy is classified as occupancy group A-3 religious house of worship.

  • Real property owned by a housing development fund company organized pursuant to the business corporation law and article eleven of the private housing finance law.

  • A building that participates in a project-based federal housing program.


LL97 Advisory Board

An Advisory Board will provide advice and recommendations to the Commissioner and Mayor’s Office relating to effectively reducing GHG emissions from buildings as required by section 28-320.2.  The results of the Advisory Board’s efforts will be documented in reports to the Mayor and the Speaker of the City Council, to be submitted no later than January 1, 2023. See list of LL97 Advisory Board Members.

Questions on Local Law 97 may be sent to GHGEmissions@buildings.nyc.gov.


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