State and Local Policy Database

Buildings Summary

Buildings are high energy users in cities, and clear targets for substantial energy savings. Policies that relate to land use and buildings are two of the core authorities of local governments, and, as a result, there are a variety of energy-related buildings policies over which local governments have control. Some policies that affect buildings are determined at the state level, but many cities have gone above and beyond state requirements in an effort to meet city-determined objectives for the reduction of energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Policies can be based on any aspect of buildings lifecycle, from construction and energy codes to maintenance and operations of new and existing buildings. This section focuses on policies regarding energy use in private buildings.

The City of Albuquerque enforces the state’s energy code for residential and commercial properties. The city offers upfront support on energy code compliance for building owners and/or developers. Albuquerque offers several incentives for both energy efficiency upgrades and solar energy installation. The city does not have a benchmarking and disclosure policy nor does it require building owners perform additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

Arlington has no legal authority to enact stretch codes or implement mandatory benchmarking programs. Nevertheless, this county engages in several initiatives to improve energy efficiency in its residential and commmercial sectors including providing incentives, upfront code support, and a voluntary benchmarking program. 

Last Updated: May 2017

The City of Atlanta has authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level but has not done so. The city enforces the state’s energy codes. The city has adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy for commercial buildings. Atlanta offers several incentives for energy efficiency projects and renewable energy projects. The city requires properties covered under the cities benchmarking ordinance to perform energy audits once every ten years.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Aurora has local authority to adopt building energy codes. The city requires plan reviews and site inspection to ensure building energy code compliance. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Austin has adopted several initiatives and requirements for buildings to achieve energy savings and install renewable energy systems. These include a strict energy code, green building requirements, multiple rebates and incentives, and required energy actions.  

Last updated: March 2019

We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Baltimore has the authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level but has not done so. The city has not adopted a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure ordinance. Baltimore offers a multitude of incentives to residential, multifamily, and commercial properties for energy efficiency, solar energy, and low-income energy improvement projects.

Last updates: March 2019

The City of Birmingham enforces the state’s energy codes, but the city has authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

Boston has several building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including a “stretch” energy code, energy savings goals, green building requirements, and benchmarking and disclosure. The Inspectional Services Department manages building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Boston, while many of the other building energy policies are managed by the Office of Environment.

Last updated: March 2019

Boulder has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including third-party compliance programs, upfront code support, and residential benchmarking requirements. The Department of Planning and Development Services manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Boulder.

Last Updated: October 2015

Bridgeport does not have the authority to adopt its own codes. The city offers building owners a single incentive for solar installation. The city does not have policies in place to ensure energy code enforcement, nor has the city adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. 

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Buffalo adheres to the state’s energy code. The city does not have policies in place to enforce energy code compliance. Buffalo does not offer incentives for energy efficiency or solar energy projects. The city does not require building owners perform any additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

Burlington has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including upfront code support. The Department of Public Works manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Burlington.

Last Updated: October 2015

Carrboro has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency.  The Inspections Division within the Planning Department manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the Town of Carrboro.

Last Updated: April 2014

The City of Charlotte enforces the state’s building energy codes. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

Charlottesville has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency, including upfront code support and incentives for energy-efficiency building improvements. The Neighborhood Development Services Department manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for Charlottesville.

Last Updated: October 2015

The City of Chicago currently complies with the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). The Chicago Energy Use Benchmarking Ordinance includes comprehensive benchmarking and disclosure requirements for buildings greater than 50,000 square feet. The city offers incentives to residential buildings for both energy efficiency upgrades and solar installation. Chicago does not require buildings to perform energy saving actions, but the Retrofit Chicago Energy Challenge has been successful at reducing energy use.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Chula Vista complies with the State of California’s energy code, and requires both residential and commercial buildings adhere to CalGreen. The city has not passed a benchmarking and disclosure ordinance, nor does it require buildings to perform additional above-code energy-saving actions. Chula Vista offers residential and commercial buildings incentives for both energy efficiency upgrades and solar installations.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Cincinnati enforces the state’s building and energy codes. The city runs a voluntary benchmarking program in the Cincinnati 2030 District. The city offers several incentives for both energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The State of Ohio requires local jurisdiction to follow its building energy codes. The city does not have procedures in place to account for mandatory energy code compliance. The city runs a voluntary benchmarking and disclosure program for commercial buildings in the downtown area. Cleveland offers several incentives to both commercial and residential property owners for energy efficiency and solar energy projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Columbus enforces that state’s energy code. The city has established a comprehensive code compliance verification process. Columbus has not adopted a mandatory benchmarking policy, but currently runs a voluntary benchmarking program. The city offers PACE financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Dallas adopted the Dallas Energy Conservation Code, which incorporated the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for residential buildings and the 2015 IECC and ASHRAE 90.1-2013 for commercial buildings. The city does not have a benchmarking and disclosure policy. Dallas offers incentives for energy efficiency upgrades, solar installations, and low-income programs. The city mandates a low-energy use requirement for buildings.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Denver adopted the 2016 Denver Building Code which is composed of the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code with city amendments. Denver adopted a benchmarking and disclosure ordinance for commercial and multifamily buildings over 25,000. The city offers buildings incentives for both energy efficiency upgrades and solar installation. Buildings are required to comply with the Green Building Ordinance by choosing one energy action from a range of choices.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Detroit enforces the state’s energy code. The city does not have a comprehensive energy code compliance verification program. Detroit has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. 

Last updated: March 2019

Dubuque has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including upfront code support. The Building Services Department manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Dubuque.

Last Updated: October 2013

The City of El Paso has authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. The city has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy, El Paso offers incentives for both energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. El Paso does not require building owners perform any additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Fort Worth has adopted building energy codes independent of the state. The city runs a voluntary benchmarking program for commercial buildings. The city’s home county offers PACE financing to both commercial and multifamily building owners. Fort Worth does not require building owners perform audits, retrofits, retrocommissioning, nor other energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Grand Rapids enforces the state’s building energy codes. The city does not have a comprehensive code compliance policy. Grand Rapids runs a voluntary benchmarking program through its 2030 District. Grand Rapids offers property assessed clean energy financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy project.

Last updated: May 2019

The City of Hartford enforces the state’s energy code. The city’s subdivision regulations and zoning code include solar- and EV-ready provisions, respectively. Hartford has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Henderson enforces the state’s energy code, though the city does have authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Honolulu derives many of its energy policies from the state. The city requires third-party plan reviews and inspections for energy code compliance, but does not offer upfront support on the code. The city offers incentives for solar and energy efficiency projects on low-income properties. 

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Houston adopted the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code with city amendments. The city provides support for developers and building owners with upfront support through the Green Building Resource Center. Houston does not have a benchmarking and disclosure ordinance, but runs a voluntary benchmarking program for commercial buildings. Houston also offers incentives for energy efficiency, solar, and low-income projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Indianapolis enforces the state’s energy code. The city has not adopted a mandatory benchmarking policy. The city offers several incentives specifically for energy efficiency projects. Indianapolis does not require building owners conduct above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Jacksonville enforces the state’s building energy codes. The city offers incentives for energy efficiency projects. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

Kansas City adopted the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with amendments. The city requires benchmarking and disclosure for commercial, public, and multifamily buildings. Kansas City also offers incentives for energy efficiency upgrades.

Last updated: March 2019

Knoxville has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including an energy savings target and upfront code support. The Building Codes, Permits, and Inspections Department manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Knoxville.

Last Updated: October 2015

The City of Knoxville has authority to adopt building energy codes. The city offers upfront support to building owners and developers. The city does not have a benchmarking and disclosure policy. Knoxville offers residential and commercial property owners incentives for energy efficiency retrofits.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Las Vegas has adopted the 2018 International Codes. The city does not have a mandatory benchmarking policy for commercial, multifamily, or single-family buildings. Las Vegas offers financing options for energy efficiency improvements and solar installations.

Last updated: March 2019

Lawrence has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including upfront code support. The Building Safety Division manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Lawrence.

Last Updated: October 2015

The City of Long Beach complies with the energy codes and efficiency standards set by the State of California and California Energy Commission. The city has passed EV-ready requirements. The city also offers incentives and financing options for energy efficiency upgrades and solar installation.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Los Angeles complies with the California Building Energy Efficiency Standards. Los Angeles also codified solar- and EV-readiness. The city passed a commercial and multifamily benchmarking ordinance. The city offers several incentives and financing options for energy efficiency improvements and low-income projects. The city requires buildings to perform energy audits and retrofits requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Louisville enforces the state’s energy codes. The city administers a voluntary benchmarking program. Louisville offers a single incentive for energy efficiency projects.

Last updated: March 2019

Madison has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including an energy savings target, residential and commercial efficiency incentives, and upfront code support. The Building Inspection Unit manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Madison.

Last Updated: October 2013

The City of McAllen enforces the state’s energy code, though the city has authority to adopt code at the municipal level. Hidalgo County offers PACE financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies nor above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Memphis is a home rule city and adopts its own building energy code. The city has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers incentives for energy efficiency and solar energy projects, particularly for low-income property owners.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Mesa has authority to adopt energy codes at the municipal level. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Miami enforces the state’s energy code. The city has not established a comprehensive code compliance verification process. Miami has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency and solar energy projects. Miami requires building owners conduct one above-code energy action.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Milwaukee enforces the state energy code. The city offers several incentives for energy improvement projects. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Minneapolis enforces the state’s energy code. The city administers a commercial and multifamily benchmarking ordinance. Minneapolis offers several incentives to commercial and residential properties energy efficiency, solar energy installation, and low-income energy projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Nashville enforces the state’s energy codes. Nashville has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers incentives for energy efficiency and low-income energy projects. Nashville does not require owners and/or developers perform any above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

New Haven does not have the authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level and thus enforces Connecticut’s code. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of New Orleans enforces the state’s energy code, though the city does have authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. The city established a compressive code compliance verification process. New Orleans has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. New Orleans offers several incentives for energy efficient actions. The city does not require building owners perform additional above-code energy actions.

Last updated: March 2019

New York City has the authority to adopt building energy codes and enforces the 2016 New York City Energy Conservation Code. The city has included both solar- and EV-ready provisions in its city codes. The city has established a comprehensive energy code compliance verification process. Additionally, the city requires both commercial, multifamily, and groups of buildings on a single lot to benchmark and disclosure energy data. New York City also requires building owners to conduct several additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Newark enforces the state’s building energy codes. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Oakland adopted a city stretch code. The city does not have a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure, but the State of California requires benchmarking through AB 802. Oakland offers incentives for energy efficiency upgrades, solar installations, and to low-income property owners. The city mandates low-energy use requirements for cities.

Last updated: March 2019

Oklahoma City has the jurisdiction to adopt building energy codes. The city does not have any processes in place to ensure building energy code compliance. The city has not passed a benchmarking and disclosure policy. Oklahoma City offers a single incentives for home energy efficiency improvement projects.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Omaha has authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level, but has not adopted a code more stringent than Nebraska’s energy code. The city offers C-PACE financing for renewable energy projects. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: March 2019

The City of Orlando complies with the State of Florida’s codes. The Building Energy and Water Efficiency Strategy requires buildings over 50,000 square feet to benchmark energy use and will require energy-saving actions beginning in 2020. The city also administers a voluntary benchmarking program for smaller buildings. Orlando offers several incentives to encourage energy efficiency improvements, solar installation, and low-income energy actions.

Last updated: March 2019

Park City has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency including upfront code support. The Department of Building and Building Regulations manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for Park City.

Last Updated: October 2015

The State of Pennsylvania typically requires cities to adhere to state energy codes, but in 2018 the state gave Philadelphia the option to adopt its own building codes. The city administers a commercial and multifamily benchmarking and disclosure program. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Phoenix adopted the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and provides developments with an alternative compliance path. The city does not have the authority to create a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure ordinance, but supports a voluntary program. The city provides incentives for energy efficiency upgrades and low-income energy projects.  

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Pittsburgh is required to comply with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s building energy codes. Pittsburgh adopted a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure ordinance. The city also offers incentives and financing options for energy efficiency improvements and solar installations.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Portland is required to adhere to the 2014 Oregon Energy Efficiency Specialty Code. The city has adopted both commercial and single-family home benchmarking policies. The city offers financing options for commercial property owners to pursue energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy installations. Portland mandates a low-energy use requirement for buildings.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Providence enforces the state’s energy codes. The city requires plan reviews to verify energy code compliance. Providence has not adopted a benchmarking and disclosure ordinance. The city offers access to property assessed clean energy financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Raleigh enforces the state’s energy codes. The city has established a comprehensive energy code compliance process. Raleigh has not adopted a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers grants for energy efficiency improvement projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Reno has the authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. The city does not have a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure policy, but Reno has created the voluntary ReEnergy Reno program. The city does not offer incentives for energy project and does not require building owners perform any above-code energy-saving actions.

Last Update: March 2019

The City of Richmond enforces the state’s energy code. The city does not have the authority to adopt a mandatory benchmarking ordinance, but Richmond has not adopted a voluntary policy. The city offers a single incentive for energy efficient buildings.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Riverside adheres to California’s energy policies including energy code, solar- and EV-ready mandates, and benchmarking. The city offers several incentives and financing options for energy efficiency, solar, and low-income energy projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Rochester enforces the state’s building energy code. The city has a comprehensive energy code compliance verification process. Rochester does not have a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city offers a single incentive for residential energy efficiency upgrades.

Last Update: March 2019

The City of Sacramento enforces the state’s building energy codes and solar- and EV-readiness mandates. The city also adheres to California’s mandatory benchmarking and disclosure policy. Sacramento and Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) offer several incentives and financing options for both commercial and residential property owners seeking energy efficiency improvements and/or renewable energy installations.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of St. Paul enforces the state’s building and energy codes. The city previously ran a voluntary benchmarking program, but currently does not have an active benchmarking policy. The city offers several incentives, notably for energy efficiency projects.

Last Update: March 2019

The City of St. Petersburg enforces the state’s building energy codes. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency projects. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies or above-code energy action requirements.

Last Update: March 2019

Salt Lake City enforces the state’s energy codes. The city does not have a comprehensive code enforcement and compliance process. The city passed a commercial benchmarking and disclosure ordinance that also requires building owners to perform an energy audit depending on the property’s ENERGY STAR score. Salt Lake City offers several incentives for energy efficiency and solar energy projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of San Antonio enforces the state’s building energy code for commercial buildings and the city’s code for residential buildings, though the city has authority to adopt both local commercial and residential codes. The city does not have a comprehensive energy code compliance verification process. The city does not have a benchmarking and disclosure policy either. San Antonio offers several incentives for energy efficient upgrades, solar energy installation, and low-income energy improvement action.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of San Diego adheres to California’s energy policies including energy code, solar- and EV-readiness, and benchmarking. The city offers several incentives and financing programs for energy efficiency and solar projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

San Francisco has adopted building energy codes at the municipal level. The city’s code also includes solar- and EV-ready provisions more stringent than those required by the state code. The city has established a comprehensive energy code compliance verification process. The city has implemented a commercial benchmarking and disclosure policy; the policy does not require multifamily properties to benchmark energy use. San Francisco requires both residential and commercial building owners to perform additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of San Jose adheres to California’s energy code. The city adopted a benchmarking ordinance covering buildings larger than 20,000 square feet. The city offers several incentives and financing programs for energy efficiency and solar projects. San Jose requires building owners perform to perform energy-saving actions.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Seattle complies with the statewide residential code, but the state allows Seattle to adopt more stringent commercial code. The city has adopted its own benchmarking ordinance, and data is available to the public. Seattle offers a range of incentives and financing options for energy efficiency and low-income energy projects. The city requires a single energy-saving action.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of St. Louis has jurisdiction to adopt its own building energy codes. The city adopted a benchmarking and disclosure policy. The city also offers several incentives for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Tampa enforces the state’s energy codes. The city has not adopted a mandatory benchmarking and disclosure policy. Tampa offers several incentives for energy efficiency projects. The city does not require building owners conduct additional above-code energy-saving actions.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Tucson has adopted building energy codes at the municipal level. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last Update: March 2019

The City of Tulsa has authority to adopt energy codes at the municipal level but has not done so. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last Update: March 2019

The City of Virginia Beach enforces the state’s building and energy codes. The city is an active advocate for more stringent energy standards. The city has not adopted a mandatory nor voluntary benchmarking and disclosure policy. Virginia Beach offers tax breaks for energy efficient buildings.

Last Updated: March 2019

Washington, D.C. formally adopted the 2013 D.C. Construction Code. The District also adopted a commercial and multifamily building benchmarking policy. The city offers several incentives for energy efficiency, solar, and low-income energy projects. The city requires building owners perform one energy-saving action. The recently signed Clean Energy DC Omnibus Act of 2018 includes provisions to create a more robust energy policy landscape.

Last Updated: March 2019

The City of Worcester enforces the state’s energy codes, but has adopted a state-determined stretch code. The city has not established a comprehensive energy code compliance verification process nor adopted a mandatory benchmarking policy. Worcester does not offer incentives for energy projects. The city does not require above-code energy-saving actions

Last Updated: March 2019