State and Local Policy Database

Fort Worth

City Scorecard Rank


Fort Worth, TX

28.00Scored out of 100Updated 5/2015
Local Government Operations
Score: 7 out of 15 points
Local Government Summary List All

Fort Worth’s Sustainability Task Force is creating action plans to ensure the city’s infrastructure and resources keep pace with the city’s growth. The second phase of the process detailed ways to improve city operations to further sustainability goals, including initiatives related to energy usage in municipal buildings and fuel consumption of the vehicle fleet.  

Last updated: December 2014

Local Government Energy Efficiency Goals List All

City Council Resolution 4130-09-2012 formally adopted a goal to reduce Fort Worth’s electricity consumption 5% each fiscal year for ten years beginning in 2011, in compliance with Texas state law SB 898. The city also has a DOE Better Buildings goal and municipal buildings are part of the city’s commitment. We could not confirm if the city has a goal that covers all its local government operations. The Fort Worth City Council appointed a Sustainability Task Force, comprised of individuals from local government and non-profits, who helped in setting the electricity consumption goal. 

Last updated: December 2014

Performance Management Strategies List All

The City of Fort Worth reinvests utility incentives into a Special Trust Fund that is then spent on future energy efficiency efforts.

Fort Worth does not publish internal energy use data but municipal energy use is included in the Fort Worth Better Buildings data posted annually on the DOE website. All energy savings from Fort Worth's energy savings performance contracts (ESPC) are reviewed by a third party evaluator before execution. Before creating the most recent ESPC phase, the city contracted a 3rd party evaluator to review the savings report of several past phases. 

Two employees in the city's Facilities Management Group oversee internal and external energy efficiency initiatives. We did not find information regarding whether Fort Worth offers financial or non-financial incentives for energy efficiency actions to departments or individual staff.

Last updated: February 2015

Procurement and Construction List All

Vehicle Fleets and Infrastructure

When reviewing vehicle requests, the city encourages the use of smaller more fuel efficient vehicles, but Fort Worth does not have a fuel efficiency requirement for its vehicle fleet. The Equipment Services Department conducts an Underutilized Vehicle Study annually and conducts meetings when needed to review vehicles that should be removed from the fleet for age and low use. Fort Worth adopted the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s (TCEQ) Idling Limitation Rule and signed the North Texas Memorandum of Agreement to comply with the state/commission rule for idling. In accordance with Council Ordinance #3334-04-2006, vehicle idling should only be allowed for safety, emergency response, vehicle maintenance, equipment activity, warm-up/operations in cold temperature, and manufacturer recommended minimum idle/warm-up times. 

Note: For local fleet initiatives, policies listed must make a specific, mandatory requirement for increasing fleet efficiency. Local alternative-fuel vehicle procurement requirements that give a voluntary option to count efficient vehicles are thus not included.

Public Lighting

The Fort Worth City Council adopted the MSSLC guidelines for public street lighting and IES-RP8-00 Criteria in conjunction with Dark Sky initiatives (Full Cutoff Lighting Only) for new public street lighting. Currently, roughly 1% of the lighting installed is LED with department goals set at 10% by the end of FY 2015.  

New Buildings and Equipment

Fort Worth’s Action Plan calls for a policy requiring new city buildings to be LEED Silver–certified (or better) when the certification cost does not exceed 5% of the construction cost, but we do not know if the policy has been adopted. We also could not confirm if the requirements specifically emphasized completion of the energy efficiency elements of the certification. Major renovations must also obtain LEED EB Silver certification or better when the cost of certification does not exceed 5% of the renovation cost. We did not find information on energy efficiency procurement policies.

Last updated: February 2015

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking and Retrofitting

Fort Worth benchmarks approximately 60% of municipal building space through Portfolio Manager and monitors it on a monthly basis. The city’s conservation program acts to regularly retrocommission and retrofit buildings to improve energy efficiency when submitted projects are deemed cost-effective. The city is a DOE Better Buildings Challenge Community Partner, with 5.7 million square feet committed, including municipal buildings.

Sustainable Infrastructure Policies

Fort Worth has citywide transportation impact fees (see Ordinance 18083-05-2008) to assure the development of adequate transportation facilities to serve new developments in the city. 

Public Employees

The city provides an E-pass to municipal employees. The E-Pass provides free transportation anywhere on the T buses as well as the Trinity Railway Express (TRE) from downtown Fort Worth to Centreport Station (serving D/FW International Airport). The city also allows employees to earn compensatory time for using mass transit. We did not find data on policies that reduce the commutes of city workers, such as flex schedules and teleworking policies. 

Last updated: February 2015

Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 2.5 out of 10 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

Fort Worth has few community-wide initiatives related to energy efficiency.

Last updated: January 2017

Community-Wide Energy Efficiency GoalsList All

Fort Worth does not have energy efficiency-related goals for its entire community. The city did enter into a Better Buildings Challenge Community Partner Agreement to reduce energy intensity 20% by 2020 in 5,700,000 square feet of building space.

While the city regularly publishes progress reports on energy efficiency in municipal operations, there is no such report for community-wide energy efficiency.  

Last updated: January 2017

Performance Management StrategiesList All

We could not find annually released public reports on community-wide energy efficiency-related activities. Fort Worth’s energy service performance contracts (ESPC) are reviewed by a third-party evaluator before execution, but we could not confirm if the city regularly uses an independent third-party to evaluate, monitor, and verify savings from community-wide efficiency projects. Two employees sit within the Facilities Management division that work on internal and external energy efficiency and the city reinvests utility incentives into a Special Trust Fund that is then spent on future energy efficiency efforts.

Last updated: December 2014

Efficient Distributed Energy Systems - District Energy and Combined Heat and PowerList All

We did not find information on any programs or policies to plan for future district energy systems. 

Last updated: January 2017

Mitigation of Urban Heat Islands List All

The city adopted an urban tree canopy coverage goal of 30% through Ordinance 18615-05-2009. The ordinance lays out both private tree preservation and planting requirements for the city.

We did not find information on any policies that require or incentivize low impact development (LID) or conservation of private land.  

Last updated: January 2017

Buildings Policies
Score: 3.5 out of 29 points
Buildings Summary List All

Fort Worth has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including an energy savings target and upfront code support. The Planning and Development Department manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Fort Worth.

Last Updated: December 2014

Stringency of Energy CodesList All

The State of Texas allows its local jurisdictions to adopt building energy codes more stringent than the Texas Building Energy Code. The minimum state standard for single-family residential construction must comply with the 2015 International Residential Code (IRC). All other residential and commercial building construction must comply with the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). State-funded building construction must comply with ASHRAE 90.1-2013. To learn more about the building energy code requirements for the State of Texas, please visit the State Policy Database.


Fort Worth has adopted the 2015 IECC with amendments. The code went into effect on January 1, 2017.


Fort Worth has adopted the 2015 IECC with amendments. The code went into effect on January 1, 2017.

Last Updated: January 2017

Building Energy Code Enforcement and ComplianceList All

Fort Worth reported a budget of $5,650,000 for the building code department in 2013. This level of spending normalizes to $7 per $1,000 of residential construction spending for the city. Fort Worth has not made third-party plan review or performance testing mandatory for code compliance, but certifies six third-party companies that developers may hire to perform construction and energy code inspections if they prefer not to use city staff. As upfront code support, Fort Worth holds pre-development and pre-construction conferences.

Last Updated: December 2014

Requirements and Incentives for Efficient Buildings List All

Building Energy Savings Goals

Fort Worth has set its energy intensity goals in conjunction with its involvement as a DOE Better Building Challenge Community Partner. Fort Worth has the goal to reduce energy intensity by 20% by 2020. This goal covers 5.7 million square feet of private building stock.

Green Building Requirements

New city buildings and major renovations must be LEED Silver or better certified when the certification cost does not exceed 5% of the construction cost. Privately-funded commercial and residential buildings are not subject to green building requirements.

Energy Audit and Retrofit Requirements

Fort Worth does not yet require commercial or residential buildings to take energy efficiency actions such as energy audits or retro-commissioning.  

Incentives and Financing for Efficient Buildings

Fort Worth does not yet provide incentives or financing products for home or building owners making energy efficient upgrades.

Last Updated: December 2014

Benchmarking, Rating, & Transparency List All

Fort Worth does not have a mandatory or voluntary programs to encourage building benchmarking in any sector. City buildings are required to track energy and water use through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager as a prerequisite of the Fort Worth Energy Conservation Program.

Last Updated: December 2014

Comprehensive Efficiency Services List All

The Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program is not available in Fort Worth.

Last Updated: December 2014

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 8.5 out of 18 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

Oncor, and investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric utility serving the City of Fort Worth. Atmos, and IOU, is Fort Worth’s primary natural gas supplier. The City of Fort Worth is an active promoter of Atmos and Oncor’s energy efficiency programs. The State of Texas requires electric utilities to offset load-growth through end-use energy efficiency, mandated through an EERS. The utilities must also submit their energy savings goals to the Public Utility Commission of Texas. To learn more about the state-requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Texas page of the State Database.

The Fort Worth Water Department is the municipal utility which provides drinking water services and wastewater treatment to the City of Fort Worth. Stormwater management and services are provided by Fort Worth’s Transportation and Public Works Department (TPW).

Last Updated: December 2014

Electric & Gas Energy Efficiency Programs, Spending & SavingsList All

In 2013, according to Oncor, they spent $58,194,000 on electric efficiency programs, representing 1.64% of its annual revenue. Due to these programs, Oncor reported a net incremental electricity savings of 224,666MWh, representing 0.20% of its retail sales. In the same year, Atmos reported spending $248,425 on gas efficiency programs according to The 2013 Conservation and Energy Efficiency Report. The expenditures normalize to $.14 per residential customer. Data on natural gas savings resulting from these programs is not available. Spending on electricity and natural gas represented in this section covers the entire Texas service territory, not just Fort Worth. Oncor offers electric efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers. Atmos similarly offers natural gas efficiency programs to residential and business customers.

Fort Worth partners with Oncor and Atmos to promote participation in efficiency the Fort Worth Better Buildings Challenge. Fort Worth’s Housing and Economic Development department partners with Oncor for the weatherization program. Other programs include the Business Smart program, and Sustainable Energy Round Table – two working groups which aim to transform the local energy efficiency markets.

Last Updated: December 2014

Energy Efficiency Targets & Funding Agreements List All

Fort Worth’s utilities are not subject to a local energy savings target, instead must meet the state target.

The City of Fort Worth does not have a franchise agreement nor municipal aggregation contract in place to ensure energy efficiency while powering city operations.

Last Updated: December 2014

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

In order for customers to access their own energy data, Oncor makes use of the Green Button data sharing platform. Oncor does not provide Fort Worth’s building managers with automatic benchmarking data for use in Portfolio Manager. Oncor does not provide community aggregate energy usage data for public consumption for planning or program evaluation. At this point, the City of Fort Worth does not advocate to the state for improvements in data provision by the utilities.

Last Updated: December 2014

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Water Efficiency

Fort Worth’s goals are based on the recommendations of the Texas Water Conservation Implementation Task Force, which suggested a 1% reduction in gallons of water used per capita per day per year. The city has a SmartFlush program to replace residential toilets with high-efficiency toilets and has time-of-day watering restrictions.

Energy Efficiency and Self-Generation

The Fort Worth Water Department participates in the city's energy conservation programs and is currently completing three phases of the city’s energy savings performance contracts (ESPCs). The ESPC-financed improvements to the city’s water reclamation facility are projected to improve the facility's self-generation from 50 to 70%.

Green Stormwater Infrastructure

The city’s stormwater management division has a credit policy that provides reduced stormwater utility fees for properties that have water quality features or practices. Funding for green infrastructure and water quality projects is made available through the stormwater utility.

Last Updated: December 2014

Score: 6.5 out of 28 points
Transportation Summary List All

The transportation authority serving the city of Fort Worth is The Fort Worth Transportation Authority. The T also provides the public transportation for the city and the broader metropolitan area, including bus and light rail service. The North Central Texas Council of Governments is the MPO in charge of conducting metropolitan transportation planning. Its area of jurisdiction encompasses the Dallas-Fort Worth area as well as many surrounding counties. The Department of Transportation and Public Works is the city agency charged with managing the city’s transportation network.

Last updated: December 2014

Location Efficiency List All

Fort Worth has implemented form-based codes to govern development in the Near Southside and Trinity Uptown neighborhoods. The city allows one or more parking spaces per residential unit. Fort Worth has not yet written or codified a Complete Streets Policy. There are no incentives available through the city to promote location efficiency.

Last updated: December 2014

Mode Shift List All

Transportation and Land Use Planning

Fort Worth plans to increase bicycle mode share from 0.2% to 0.6% by 2020 and pedestrian mode share from 1.2% in 2012 to 3.2% by 2025.

Car and Bicycle Sharing

There is currently no car sharing program available in Fort Worth. The city is served by a bikesharing program, Fort Worth B-cycle, with 35 operable stations.

Transportation Demand Management Programs

Fort Worth has not yet implemented any transportation demand management programs to reduce the number of single-occupancy vehicle trips or trips during rush hour.

Last updated: December 2014

Transit List All

The FWTA transit system that serves Fort Worth received $79599096 in total funding in 2012. This funding level is $96 per resident in the service territory of the agency. In comparison, 2011 spending on roads and parking by the city was $111,701,753, or $144 per city resident. This results in a ratio of per capita regional transit funding to per capita city highway and parking funding of 0.67 to 1.

The Transit Connectivity Index measures how many transit rides are available per week within walking distance from the average household. The City of Fort Worth’s Transit Connectivity Index value is 2,507, putting it in a lower category (>0 - 5,000) available in the City Scorecard.

Last updated: December 2014

Efficient Vehicles and Driver Behavior List All

At this time, Fort Worth does not offer incentives for citizens to purchase hybrid, plug-in, or EV vehicles. There are no incentives available for the construction of commercial or private EV charging infrastructure.

Fort Worth has not yet established efficient driving rules, such as an anti-idling ordinance, for private vehicles. The city is part of the Dallas-Fort Worth Clean Cities Coalition.

Last updated: December 2014

Freight List All

There are nine intermodal freight facilities within the City of Fort Worth’s boundaries, seven of which we classify as efficient because they are port- or rail-capable. Fort Worth’s share of regional freight traffic in 2012, normalized by population, is 23,358 ton-miles. As a result there are 0.3 efficient intermodal facilities per thousand ton-miles of freight traffic, putting the city in the second lowest category for this metric (>0 to 0.499) available in the City Scorecard.

Last updated: December 2014