For Immediate Release: October 6, 2022
Contact:, (212) 393-2126


New Rules and List of Covered Buildings Provide Additional Clarity for Compliance with Local Law 97 as Adams Administration Makes Progress on Meeting Aggressive Climate Goals 

NYC Accelerator Program Has Already Helped 12,900 Buildings Since 2015 with Energy Efficiency Projects and Local Law 97 Compliance

New York, NY – Department of Buildings Commissioner Eric Ulrich announced today the publication of proposed rules implementing Local Law 97 of 2019 - groundbreaking legislation that limits carbon emissions from the City’s largest buildings starting in 2024. These limits are the centerpiece of the City’s plan to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions from the five boroughs and meet aggressive reduction targets in citywide emissions by calendar year 2050. The publication of these rules is another critical step towards the robust implementation of this law ahead of the first compliance deadline scheduled for 2025.

“Decarbonizing our buildings is a critical step on the way to becoming a carbon-neutral city, and these proposed rules show that our administration is committed to fully implementing this law to ‘Get Stuff Done’ and deliver a greener, healthier New York City,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “Our administration has worked tirelessly with stakeholders across the city to make sure Local Law 97 has maximum impact, and the city stands ready to support any building owner in complying with Local Law 97 via the NYC Accelerator.”

“Buildings are our City’s largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and today's proposed rules are the first step in markedly reducing their impact," said Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi.  "In addition to requiring the industry to take bold action, city government is leading the way with aggressive efforts to promote energy efficiency and lower emissions from city-owned buildings. Thank you to the Department of Buildings, the Advisory Board, and Working Groups for months of engagement and significant feedback that informed these proposed rules."

“Now more than ever, our City needs to embrace innovative sustainability solutions to combat climate change. By reducing greenhouse gas emissions coming from the city’s largest buildings, the Adams Administration is doubling down on our commitment to create a more resilient future,” said Department of Buildings Commissioner Eric Ulrich. “The release of these proposed rules, on track to meet our commitments under the law, is a critical step to provide the clarity property owners and industry professionals need as we approach the first emission cap deadline in 2024.”

Read the Proposed Rules Here

These proposed rules are the result of significant work from the Department’s newly-created Bureau of Sustainability, along with partner agencies, the Local Law 97 Advisory Board, and Working Groups. These rules will provide additional clarity on Local Law 97 as property owners continue energy efficiency retrofits on their buildings. Included in the proposed rules are:

  • A formula for determining a building’s annual greenhouse gas emissions limits
  • The method for calculating a building’s energy use
  • The method for factoring time of use into calculations, which encourages responsible energy consumption
  • The adoption of US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Energy Star Portfolio Manager property types for implementation of the law, which enables the Department to more accurately assign emissions limits to the owners of different building types based on their energy usage.   

In conjunction with the release of these Local Law 97 rules, the Department has also published the first Local Law 97 Covered Buildings List, which will include all buildings in the City that will be subject to the 2025 compliance deadline. The Department has been working with a Climate Advisory Board and multiple Climate Working Groups, staffed with industry stakeholders and subject matter experts, to advise the city on how best to meet these aggressive sustainability goals. Recommendations resulting from the Advisory Board and Working Group process will be submitted to the Mayor and City Council by the end of the year. 

These proposed rules will be open to public comment during an online hearing, which will be held on November 14, 2022. The final adopted rules are expected to be published later in the year.

Starting in 2024, buildings greater than 25,000 gross square feet must begin to meet stringent greenhouse gas emissions limits or face penalties. By 2030, emissions from these covered buildings must be reduced by 40 percent, and by 2050, further reduced to meet carbon neutrality. To meet these limits, large existing buildings will be required to undergo energy efficiency retrofits and take measures to reduce their carbon emissions. 

City government buildings are also subject to Local Law 97 and are required to meet even stricter limits. The NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services has already made significant progress in reducing carbon emissions from their portfolio to help the City achieve carbon neutrality. Through the completion of more than 10,000 energy conservation projects across 2,000 buildings citywide since 2014, the city has reduced energy usage by 3.6 million MMBtus—the equivalent of 250,000 residences—and avoided about $115 million in annual energy costs. The City has seen a reduction in emissions equal to removing approximately 70,000 cars from city streets.  

To help private property owners meet their emission targets, the city’s NYC Accelerator -- a program of the Mayor’s Office of Climate and Environmental Justice -- is available to provide free one-on-one assistance. In addition to personalized guidance on building retrofit projects, NYC Accelerator can assist owners in applying for low-interest financing and available incentive programs. NYC Accelerator has already provided guidance to owners of over 12,900 buildings since 2015. In addition, the team has initiated over 7,600 projects in 5,900 buildings across the five boroughs. Of these 7,600 projects, over 900 projects in about 600 buildings are already in construction or completed, which accounts for over 1.1 million kg of carbon dioxide equivalent reduced, and over 15 million kBTU of energy saved. There is a pipeline of about 5,300 buildings also working with the program towards beginning construction. These buildings are forecasted to affect over an additional 101 million kg of carbon emissions reduced, over 2.3 billion kBTU energy savings, and over $5.7 million dollars in savings. 

“In our city and all over the world, the climate fight is about mobilization - and nation-leading laws like Local Law 97 ensure we are putting our words into action. Buildings produce nearly seventy percent of our city’s greenhouse gas emissions. Publishing these draft rules with details for how private buildings comply with Local Law 97 will represent a significant step towards delivering on our climate goals and transitioning to a greener future,” said Chief Climate Officer and DEP Commissioner Rohit T. Aggarwala

“Decarbonization is a priority as we work to make our city greener and more sustainable, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from large buildings is crucial to achieving our goals,” said DCAS Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock.  “Through the completion of more than 10,000 energy conservation projects across 2,000 buildings citywide since 2014, we have reduced energy usage by 3.6 million MMBTUs—the equivalent of 250,000 residences—and avoided about $115 million in annual energy costs. We’ve also seen a reduction in our emissions equal to removing approximately 70,000 cars from city streets.  We’re confident that the LL97 implementing rules will drive private property owners and operators to similar success.”

“We are committed to a clear and effective path forward to enforce Local Law 97—and these new rules provide needed clarity to building owners for compliance,” said Kizzy Charles-Guzman, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Climate and Environmental Justice. “Reaching carbon neutrality by 2050 requires us all to act quickly, but we still need to tackle this challenge one building at a time. Through the NYC Accelerator, the city has made tools and programs available to support compliance, accelerate our transition to a cleaner future, and achieve more livable communities for this and future generations.”