Net-Zero Laws In New York
With the rising concerns over climate change, Net-Zero (also known as zero-emission housing) is one of the newest and most popular building trends. One major issue though is affordability.
Much of the equipment required to achieve net-zero can come at a hefty price tag, such as solar panels and batteries. One way to reduce cost is to keep your connection to the power grid, allowing you to sell excess energy to the utility companies. Unfortunately, this can be restricted due to state or regional laws. Not all states make it easy to achieve or even explore the possibility of affordable net-zero housing.
Luckily, New York is one of the best places to live if you are trying to reduce your carbon footprint. In 2019, New York announced a major initiative to make the entire state net-zero by 2050.
Currently, 26% of New York’s electricity is “green.” The new law mandates that 70% of the state’s electricity be produced by renewable sources, like wind, by 2030 - making it one of the most aggressive initiatives in the country.
New York State Funds Green Building Projects
In fact, not only is New York net-zero-friendly to new home builders and developers, but the state is also stimulating this industry with $15 million to help support the cause.
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) offers many resources and assistance to home builders to help them achieve affordable net-zero housing. New York is currently leading the Northeast with net-zero home development, with 27 current projects.
The president and CEO of NYSERDA quoted, “Net-zero buildings support New York’s comprehensive climate and clean energy strategy that aligns all sectors of the economy under smart policy to drive economic growth, increase affordability for consumers, and safeguard our environment for generations to come”
To make net-zero affordable, assistance from lawmakers is critical to jump-start the process. Some early market consumers have built net-zero homes around the country, but so far, many of these are only affordable for the upper class, due to the cost of batteries needed to store excess energy to use on cloudy days. Under New York’s new laws, it enables the entire power grid to support and work hand-in-hand with net-zero goals, making it affordable for everyone.
Retrofitting Net-Zero Homes in New York
The assistance from NYSERDA doesn’t stop at new home development. Many people to explore net-zero are looking to gut and retrofit their existing homes or businesses. This process can be far more expensive than starting from the beginning, but NYSERDA is still willing to help.
According to their website, “A builder or developer may prequalify their gut rehabilitation projects of single-family homes or multifamily buildings through NYSERDA as ENERGY STAR® Certified projects or through the program's alternative New York ENERGY $mart designation. Builders or Developers of these projects can access the same services and incentives as new construction projects, through NYSERDA’s Low-rise Residential New Construction Funding Opportunity or the Multifamily New Construction Program.”
Solar Luxury Apartments worked with NYSERDA to complete our project. With their assistance, we have been able to develop a completely zero-emission luxury living community with predictable costs of living. We have 248 apartments that rely on solar energy and state-of-the-art energy-efficient technologies. We even offer smart-building controls and electric car charging stations. We are proud to be a part of the future of clean living in New York!