State and Local Policy Database

Durham

City Scorecard Rank

n/a

Durham, NC

Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Community-Wide Initiatives
Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Durham adopted a goal to reduce community-wide GHG emissions 30% by 2030, using a 2005 baseline. ACEEE was unable to project if the city will achieve its near-term GHG emissions reduction goal because insufficient GHG emissions data were available for our analysis.

Energy Efficiency Goal

We did not find information regarding a community-wide energy reduction goal for the city.

Renewable Energy Goal

We did not find information regarding a community-wide renewable energy goal for the city.

Last updated: September 2023

Equity-Driven Approaches to Clean Energy Planning, Implementation, and EvaluationList All

Equity-Driven Community Engagement

We were unable to determine whether relevant decision-makers have taken a unique and expanded approach in conducting engagement for multiple clean energy initiatives with marginalized groups compared to engagement with other city constituencies.

Equity-Driven Decision-Making

We were unable to determine if the city has created a formal role for marginalized community residents or local organizations representing those communities to participate in decision-making that affects the creation or implementation of a local energy, sustainability, or climate action plan.

Equity Accountability Measures

We were unable to determine whether the city has adopted specific goals, metrics, or protocols to track how multiple energy, sustainability, or climate action initiatives are affecting local marginalized groups. 

Last updated: August 2023

Clean Distributed Energy ResourcesList All

The city has not adopted a formal policy, rule, or agreement that supports the creation of clean distributed energy systems.

Last updated: August 2023

Adaptive Mitigation List All

Heat Island Mitigation Policies and Programs

We were unable to determine if the city has adopted specific policies or programs that incorporate requirements or incentives to mitigate the urban heat island effect. 

Resilience Hubs

We were unable to determine if the city has supported the creation of resilience hubs that incorporate clean energy resources and are sited in disadvantaged communities.

Last updated: August 2023

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

Workforce development for disadvantaged workers

We could not determine if city has partnered with a local education institution, labor union, or community-based organization to create, support, and/or incentivize the development of clean energy workforce development initiatives that target training and support services for potential or existing workers from disadvantaged communities to obtain and keep in-demand jobs.

Workforce development for the broader community

We could not determine if city has partnered with a local education institution, labor union, or community-based organization to create, support, and/or incentivize the development of clean energy workforce development initiatives that target training and support services for potential or existing workers from the broader community to obtain and keep in-demand jobs.

Outcomes tracking

We could not determine if the city has instituted a mechanism to measure the performance and/or success of equitable workforce development initiatives focused on the clean energy sector.

Last updated: August 2023

Buildings Policies
Building Energy CodesList All

Overview

The State of North Carolina requires local jurisdictions to comply with the state-mandated building energy codes. All buildings must comply with the 2018 North Carolina Energy Conservation Code, which is less stringent than the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). The city has limited to no authority to mandate anything beyond the state code. To learn more about the building codes and requirements for the State of North Carolina, please visit the State Policy Database.

Commercial

Commercial construction in Durham complies with the North Carolina Energy Conservation Code The city’s zEPI score for its commercial energy code is 54.75. 

Residential

Residential construction in Durham complies with the North Carolina Energy Conservation Code. The city’s zEPI score for its residential energy code is 64.79.

Solar-readiness policies

The city has limited authority to adopt solar-ready ordinances, but it does allow solar use in all zones.

EV-readiness policies

We could not find information on whether the city has adopted policies requiring buildings to be EV-ready.

Low-energy use requirements

New construction of public buildings and facilities greater than 10,000 square feet must achieve a minimum rating of LEED Gold or any comparable performance criteria. Buildings between 4,000 and up to 10,000 square feet must achieve a minimum rating of LEED Silver or any comparable performance criteria.

Electrification

Durham has limited or no authority to adopt mandatory policies to encourage the elimination of fossil fuels, such as building emissions standards, all-electric readiness provisions, or all-electric requirements for new construction.

Last updated: September 2023

 

Building Energy Code Compliance and EnforcementList All

We were unable to determine the amount of staff effort dedicated to energy code enforcement. The city requires plan reviews and site inspections to verify energy code compliance. We were unable to determine if the city offers upfront support for code compliance.

Last Update: September 2023

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All

We could not find information on whether the city incentivizes energy-saving actions in existing buildings.

Last Update: September 2023

Transportation
Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Sustainable Transportation Plan

The City of Durham does not yet have a sustainable transportation plan or climate action plan with sustainable transportation strategies. 

VMT/GHG Target and Stringency

The City of Durham does not have a codified VMT or transportation GHG reduction target. 

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

The City of Durham does not have a codified VMT or transportation GHG reduction target, and therefore cannot make progress toward the target. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning Codes

We were unable to find information indicating that the City of Durham has made changes to its zoning code in the past 10 years to facilitate more residential density, mixed-use development, or transit-oriented development. 

Parking Requirements

Durham has eliminated parking minimums in certain districts. 

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosures

The City of Durham does not have location-efficient development incentives or disclosure policies. 

Affordable Housing around Transit

The City of Durham does not require, preserve, or incentivize the development of affordable housing near transit. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Target

The City of Durham does not have a codified mode share target. 

Progress Toward Mode Shift Targets

The City of Durham does not have a codified mode share target, and therefore cannot make progress toward the target. 

Subsidized Access to Efficient Transportation Options

The City of Durham provides free transit via GoDurham, and partners with Bird and Spin to offer discounted micro mobility services for those enrolled in local, state, or federal assistance programs. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Public Transit List All

Transit Funding

The transit entities that serve the City of Durham have received $45,603,296.80 on average annually between 2017 and 2021 from local sources. That equates to roughly $23.69 per capita between 2017 and 2021 within the service area. 

Access to Transit Services

The AllTransit Performance Score measures a given community's transit access and performance. The score considers connections to other routes, access to jobs, service frequency, and the percent of commuters who ride transit to work. The City of Durhams’s AllTransit Performance Score is 4.8, scoring 0 points in the City Scorecard. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Efficient VehiclesList All

Efficient Vehicle Purchase Incentives

Neither the City of Durham nor the local utility provide incentives for purchasing efficient vehicles. 

Vehicle Charging Infrastructure Incentives

Duke Energy offers up to $1117 rebate on installing either a level 1 or 2 charger to Duke Energy customers in the state of North Carolina. 

Vehicle Charging Infrastructure Requirements

The City of Durham does not require new developments to install EV charging stations. 

EV Charging Ports

The City of Durham has 43.5 vehicle charging ports per 100,000 people available for public use. 

Electric School Bus Goal

Neither the City of Durham nor the local school district have set an electric school bus goal. 

Electric Transit Bus Goal

GoDurham set a goal of transitioning 100 of its bus fleet to electric by 2035. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Freight System EfficiencyList All

Sustainable Freight Plans

The City of Durham does not have a sustainable freight plan or freight mobility plan in place, nor is it pursuing any freight efficiency strategies. 

Open Data Portals

The City of Durham does not have an open data portal with real-time freight data. 

Last Updated: September 2023

Community Energy Infrastructure
Decarbonization and Climate Change Mitigation Efforts of Cities and Energy UtilitiesList All

Clean Distributed Energy Resources 

The city has not adopted a formal policy, rule, or agreement that supports the creation of clean distributed energy systems. 

Municipal Renewable Energy Procurement 

Durham purchases renewable energy from Duke Energy; the City has a 20 MW share. 

City Renewable Energy Incentive and Financing Programs 

We could not find information on whether the city incentivizes the deployment of renewable energy systems. 

Last Updated: February 2024

Local Government Score:
Local Government Climate and Energy Goals List All

Climate Change Mitigation Goal 

The city of Durham set a goal to reduce local government GHG emissions 50% by 2030, using a 2005 baseline. 

Energy Reduction Goal 

We could not find any information regarding a local energy reduction goal for Durham. 

Renewable Electricity Goal 

We could not find any information regarding a municipal renewable energy goal for Durham. 

Last Updated: November 2023

Procurement and Construction Policies List All

Fleet Policies and Composition

Durham has a Zero Emission Fleet plan that includes right-sizing the fleet and optimizing fuel efficiency, replacing all light-duty vehicles and trucks with ZEVs by 2040, and developing policies to ensure accountability. We were unable to find data regarding fleet composition. 

Public Lighting

Durham has not adopted a policy requiring efficient outdoor lighting, such as the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. As of 2020, 95% of streetlights in Durham have been converted to LED. 

Inclusive procurement 

While we were unable to verify if the policy has been applied to energy projects, Durham has an ordinance that includes some goal-setting for MWDBE participation.  

Last Updated: October 2023

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking

Durham benchmarks Energy Use Intensity (EUI) for city-owned buildings. This measures how much energy a building is using per square foot per year. The City has established a goal to reduce the EUI by 30% by 2040 for City-owned buildings. The total EUI for City buildings in 2020 is 6% lower than the EUI in 2009 when the City’s Energy Management Program was launched.

 

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategy

Durham’s plan to maximize energy efficiency includes converting all lighting in city buildings and outside to LEDs, completing energy audits in City buildings, developing a comprehensive Energy Management Plan for City buildings over 5,000 square feet, and updating city policies to reduce carbon emissions.

Municipal Employee Transportation Benefits

We were unable to determine whether Durham provides reduced-emission transportation benefits to municipal staff.

Last update: February 2024