November 28th 2023

Building Decarbonization: Going Beyond Local Law 97

Building Decarbonization: Going Beyond Local Law 97

As 2023 draws to a close, the upcoming year looks to usher in a defining era for building decarbonization across the United States, with states like New York set to enforce greenhouse gas emissions limits on large commercial buildings, under Local Law 97. While this remains a controversial topic, one certainty is the challenges to navigate for success in moving the built environment towards net-zero.

A prominent concern resonating from all corners is who will bear the financial responsibility? It comes as no surprise that financing poses a challenge for organizations of all sizes. The encouraging news, however, is the availability of various federal, state, and local tax credits, grants, and green funding incentives. These avenues not only facilitate funding for energy conservation measures to comply with Local Law 97, but also promote sustainability and energy efficiency on a broader scale.

However, before delving into any funding considerations, a valuable first step towards decarbonization is to evaluate the current state of your assets along with any future decarbonization plans. While the use of data to inform and de-risk decisions is a timeless practice, the challenge here lies in the method of data collection.

Traditional data-gathering methods are often cumbersome and inefficient, heightening the risk of misinformed decisions. IES takes center stage in this complex narrative, as we recognize the pivotal role of accurate building physics data in informed decision-making. Our innovative technologies and analytics streamline the data collection process, ensuring precision and efficiency for producing data you can trust.

Beyond data accuracy, IES offers dynamic digital twin building analytics software, providing scalable solutions that swiftly capture your entire estate. The software facilitates optioneering studies across multiple parameters, providing scientific support for government funding initiatives and optimizing the utilization of limited budgets. The dynamic roadmaps crafted by IES integrate high-level models, building data, sub-metering, AMS, weather files, and IoT, to offer a granular understanding of measures to implement in a specific order, effectively de-risking limited energy budgets.

Subsequently, engaging the diverse stakeholders involved in owning, operating, and leasing commercial spaces becomes the next crucial step towards net-zero. Often, owners and operators find themselves with limited control over tenant spaces, creating friction and potentially extending the time required to implement net-zero projects. As Lauren Moss, Senior VP at Vornado Realty, wisely notes, tenant collaboration is "fundamental to everything that we do."

Our digital twins can help to facilitate this enhanced collaboration between building owners, operators and tenants, giving greater visibility to specific, targeted actions for each party to work towards common decarbonization goals. Ensuring each stakeholder understands the impact of their own actions upon the overall performance of the building is crucial, which is something the digital twin can provide. From the digital asset left behind, it is possible to identify both short-term operational strategies and longer-term retrofit investments which can be implemented to the mutual benefit of all stakeholders.

As the new year approaches, IES stands as a strategic partner to not only help you address the challenges but provide innovative solutions to elevate your assets’ journey towards sustainable building decarbonization. With a focus on accurate data, dynamic digital twin software, and enhanced tenant engagement, we can empower you through navigating the complexities of Local Law 97 and propel you towards a greener and more sustainable future.

For more information on the technology IES can offer to support commercial real estate decarbonisation, contact our team here