The push for caps on building energy credits – POLITICO

by | Oct 11, 2022 | Energy

New building emissions draft rules are out. | Darren McCollester/Getty Images

Beat Memo

The city Department of Buildingsofficially published its first round of rules on Local Law 97 last week. As we reported days before, they were due to drop any time. The draft rules provide some clarity on how the landmark law to cut emissions from buildings over 25,000 square feet will be implemented.The document spells out how to calculate a building’s carbon footprint, giving the real estate industry more guidance on how to comply with the law and avoid fines, The Real Deal reported. Regulators also posted a list of buildings that are subject to the law, which includes everything from apartment buildings to grocery stores, according to news outlet The City.Large buildings have to begin complying with the standard in 2024, with stricter limits going into effect in 2030. The goal of the law is to cut emissions 40 percent by 2030 and 80 percent in 2050.Still, not everyone’s questions about the law have been answered. The draft rules don’t say much about renewable energy credits (RECs) — which can be purchased to help landlords meet their emissions reduction targets. The credits will help finance new renewable projects that connect directly into New York City, such as the planned hydropower transmission line from Canada.Environmental groups want a cap on RECs so they only cover up to 10 percent of a building’s total pollution, to ensure building owners are still required to make energy efficiency improvements to their portfolios.“The Mayor must not create a potential ‘buy-out’ provision that would become a massive loophole for building owners to avoid requirements to slash air pollution from their buildings,” the groups Food & Water Watch, New York Communities for Change and New York Public Interest Research Group said in a joint statement.IT’S TUESDAY. Welcome to POLITICO New York Real Estate and Infrastructure. Please send tips, ideas, calendar items, releases, promotions, criticisms and corrections to [email protected] and [email protected].QUOTE OF THE DAY: $2.5 billion — the financial gap the MTA is projecting in 2025 and 2026.Want to receive this newsletter every weekday? Subscribe to POLITICO Pro. You’ll also receive daily policy news and other intelligence you need to act on the day’s biggest stories.

Driving The Day

MAYOR DIALS UP CONFLICT WITH COUNCIL — POLITICO’s Sally Goldenberg and Joe Anuta: Mayor Eric Adams derided his legislative counterparts on Friday, calling “hypocrisy” on those critiquing his handling of a historic influx of asylum seekers without offering any useful solutions. “A few days ago, we had a letter that came out saying that there are a bunch of hotels out there, why aren’t we using them. Can you ask the City Council: ‘Where’s the list?’ We can’t get it,” the mayor implored reporters following a speech he delivered outlining the scope of the intensifying crisis, during which he declared a state of emergency and pegged the cost of the situation at $1 billion. “People need to stop criticizing and need to step up.”As he exited City Hall several hours later, the mayor briefly remarked on the “hypocrisy” of many in the 51-member legislative body who have leveled charges against his management of the matter without suggesting space in their own districts to temporarily house the migrants entering New York City by the busload each day.STAFF VACANCIES HURT HOUSING PRODUCTION — New York Post’s Nolan Hicks and Bernadette Hogan: “Mayor Eric Adams’ administration has failed to fill key positions at housing agencies, leaving its response to skyrocketing rents and the Big Apple’s worsening housing crisis hamstrung, insiders, activists and city officials tell The Post. The mounting frustration comes as affordable housing production plummeted in recent months and as developers struggle to get key city approvals for new buildings while completed projects struggle to get needed inspections and permits to open. ‘I first discovered this because I have buildings that are built and the restaurants that are ready to be open but I can’t get the sign-off,’ said Councilwoman Gale Brewer, who has previously served as Manhattan borough president.”TIP ME: Something going on readers should know about? Have a tip or a story idea? Email us at [email protected] and [email protected].

Odds and Ends

NEW RULES LIMIT CONSTRUCTION SUPERINTENDENTS — The Real Deal’s Kathryn Brenzel: “New rules for city construction sites kicked in this spring, and more dramatic changes are planned over the next four years. As of June 1, a construction supe …

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