New York City

New York City Energy Benchmarking and Disclosure Law

On December 9, 2009, New York City Council passed a six-part energy efficiency legislation called the Greener, Greater Buildings Plan, aimed at increasing the energy efficiency of large commercial buildings.  It was enacted as part of PlaNYC, which has a goal of achieving a 30 percent reduction in New York City’s annual greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.  The plan is divided into six components: New York City Energy Code, Lighting Upgrades and Sub-Metering, Benchmarking, Audits and Retrofits, Green Workforce Development Training, and Green Building Financing.

The key portions of the new law require that new construction and retrofittings comply with the city’s energy code; lighting upgrades and installation of submeters in buildings of 50,000 sq. ft. or more, beginning in July 2010; benchmarking of all city-owned buildings beginning May 1, 2010 and every year thereafter; benchmarking of commercial buildings of 50,000 sq. ft. or more beginning May 1, 2011 and every year thereafter; disclosure of building energy ratings to a public, online website, beginning September 2011; and energy audits and retrocommissioning once every 10 years.

The city is also implementing a program to train workers to perform these required upgrades, retrofits and new construction.  Additionally, the city is establishing a fund, using $16 million in Federal stimulus funding to assist building owners in complying with the new laws.

For more information, visit New York City’s website at