- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has committed the city to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, beginning with an aggressive plan to retrofit public buildings.
- Public buildings that use a "significant" amount of energy will be upgraded by 2025 and private buildings will be given target reductions and mandates if the reductions are not met.
- The mayor's office estimated the plan will result in an additional 10% reduction in building-based greenhouse gas emissions and $8.5 billion in energy cost-savings over ten years.
De Blasio's ambitious plan has a sweeping title: One City, Built to Last: Transforming New York City’s Buildings for a Low-Carbon Future. Perhaps it is fitting, as New York City is now the largest U.S. city to commit to an 80% reduction by 2050.
The mayor said he's been in touch with other city leaders who are interested in the aggressive goal. "I think the commitment in New York City to 80-by-50 has registered very squarely with mayors around the world and I hope it will spur them to action," he said at a press availability after speaking at the United Nations Climate Summit.
The city will make direct investments to increase the efficiency of its public buildings, including schools and public housing. De Blasio said the city will also spur private building owners to invest in efficiency upgrades, "setting ambitious interim targets and incentives to catalyze voluntary reductions, and implementing mandates that trigger if interim reduction targets are not met — leading to retrofits in tens of thousands of private-owned buildings."