State and Local Policy Database


City Scorecard Rank


Louisville, KY

33.50Scored out of 100Updated 5/2017
Local Government Score:
5 out of 10 points
Local Government Summary List All

The Sustain Louisville Plan articulates the city’s energy efficiency goal for internal government operations.

Last updated: February 2017

Local Government Energy Efficiency Goals List All

In Sustain Louisville, the Louisville Metro Government set a goal to decrease energy use in city-owned buildings 30% by 2018 from a 2010 baseline.


To meet this goal, Louisville would need to reduce energy use by 7.2% per year.


The city is not currently on track for its local government energy use goal.


Louisville reports on some of its efficiency-related activities for its local government operations through the annual Sustain Louisville Progress Report. According to their 2015 progress report, Louisville reduced energy consumption in city-owned buildings by 11% between 2010 and 2015. Additionally, Louisville Metro Government hosts a citystat program called LouieStat, and the Office of Sustainability has its own version called SustainStat, used to report on the status of these goals to Mayor Fischer three to four times per year.

Last updated: April 2017

Procurement and Construction List All

Vehicle Fleets and Infrastructure

We did not find information regarding fuel efficiency requirements for the public fleet. Nevertheless, this City uses GPS technology to increase the efficiency of their public fleet, the technology has been installed in 21% of the fleet.

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

We could not confirm if Louisville has adopted a policy requiring efficient outdoor lighting, such as the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. The street lights are not owned by Louisville Metro Government; they are owned by the private utility.

New Buildings and Equipment

Louisville does not have currently have energy efficiency requirements for new public buildings or efficiency requirements in the city’s procurement policy.

Last updated: January 2017

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking and Retrofitting

Louisville Metro Government works towards tracking 100% of its buildings in Portfolio Manager. We could not confirm the existence of comprehensive retrofit strategies for public buildings in Louisville.

Public Employees

Louisville has an alternative work schedule policy for city employees.

Last updated: January 2017

Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 7.5 out of 12 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

The Sustain Louisville plan articulates the city’s community-wide energy efficiency-related goals. Louisville has recently completed the most comprehensive urban heat island study in the nation.

Last updated: April 2017

Community-Wide Energy Efficiency GoalsList All

Mayor Greg Fischer signed the Compact of Mayors (COM) in April 2016. A community-wide greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal has not been set, but will be set as required through the COM.

In the Sustain Louisville plan, the Louisville Metro Government set a goal to decrease community-wide per capita energy use 25% below 2012 levels by 2025. Mayor Fischer has formally adopted this goal.

The city releases regular reports that track the city’s progress toward its goals. Sustain Louisville’s 2015 Progress Report indicates that the city is not on track to achieve its energy reduction goals.

Last updated: April 2017

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: April 2017

Mitigation of Urban Heat Islands List All

The Louisville Urban Tree Canopy Assessment adopted an urban heat island mitigation goal to reach 45% urban tree canopy cover across the city.

The city’s Land Development Code allows for conservation subdivisions that encourage the permanent protection of land alongside dense residential development patterns. The city is currently in the process of developing an incentives program to encourage the use of low impact development techniques in site design.

Last updated: April 2017

Buildings Policies
Score: 4.5 out of 28 points
Buildings Summary List All

Louisville has some building sector initiatives to improve efficiency. The Department of Codes and Regulations manages the building energy code compliance and enforcement for the City of Louisville.

Last Updated: January 2017

Stringency of Energy CodesList All

The State of Kentucky requires its local jurisdictions to follow the 2013 Kentucky Building Code (KBC). The KBC references the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for commercial buildings and the 2009 IECC for residential buildings. To learn more about the required building codes for the State of Kentucky, please visit the State Policy Database


Commercial buildings in Louisville must comply with the 2013 KBC. Louisville has not yet begun advocating for increased stringency in commercial building energy codes.


Residential buildings in Louisville must comply with the 2013 KBC. Louisville has not yet begun advocating for increased stringency in residential building energy codes.

Last Updated: January 2017

Building Energy Code Enforcement and ComplianceList All

Louisville does not have internal staff dedicated solely to energy code compliance. The city does not require building code officials to complete energy code training. The city has made third-party plan review and performance testing mandatory for code compliance. The city provides upfront support to developers or owners for energy code compliance. 

Last Updated: January 2017

Requirements and Incentives for Efficient Buildings List All

Green Building Requirements

Louisville has not yet established above-code building requirements for any class of building.

Energy Audit and Retrofit Requirements

Louisville 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

In April 2016, Louisville became an Energy Project Assessment District and began offering a voluntary program for financing energy efficiency projects in commercial buildings over a twenty year term. The program is similar to PACE financing programs common in other jurisdictions. Residential building owners can find energy efficiency intiatives through The Green Initiative program and commercial building owners through the The Louisville Energy Alliance.

Last Updated: January 2017

Benchmarking, Rating, & Transparency List All

Louisville does not have mandatory programs to encourage building benchmarking in any sector. The Office of Sustainability and The Louisville Energy Alliance encourage building owners to voluntarily benchmark their buildings through the Louisville Kilowatt Crackdown.  

Last Updated: January 2017

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 4.5 out of 20 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

Louisville Gas & Electric (LG&E), an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric and natural gas utility serving the City of Louisville. The State of Kentucky has not yet implemented an energy efficiency portfolio standard in which levels of energy efficiency must be achieved annually by the state’s utilities through demand side programs. To learn more about the state-requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Kentucky page of the State Database.

The Louisville Water Company supplies drinking water to residents of Louisville and the Metropolitan Sewer District is the regional wastewater utility that serves the city.

Last Updated: January 2017

Electric & Gas Energy Efficiency Programs, Spending & SavingsList All

In 2015, according to EIA, LG&E achieved 52,296 MWh in net incremental savings, representing 0.44% of retail sales. To achieve these savings, LG&E spent $16,218,000 on electric efficiency programs in 2015, which equates to 1.51% of annual revenue. In 2015, LG&E either did not spend or did not report spending on natural gas efficiency programs. Louisville Gas & Electric offers natural gas and electric efficiency tools and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers.

At this time, the City of Louisville does not have a formal partnership with LG&E in the form of a jointly-developed or administered energy saving strategy, plan, or agreement.

Last Updated: January 2017

Low-Income & Multifamily EE Programs List All

Low-Income Programs

LG&E offers the Residential Low-Income Weatherization Program (WeCare) to qualified low-income residential customers, providing energy efficiency measures. The program provides education, energy audits, blower door tests, and installation of weatherization and energy conservation measures designed to reduce energy consumption. The program also includes health and safety measures and water efficiency measures. Qualified customers receive energy conservation measures costing up to $2,100 based upon the customer’s most recent 12-month energy usage and the results of an energy audit. If customers qualify for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, then they are automatically qualified for the WeCare program.

In 2015, according to LG&E, it achieved 7,353 MWh in energy savings from its low-income programs, while spending $4,368,838 on its low-income efficiency portfolio. These programs served 3,215 low-income customers, with each household receiving an average of $1,359 and saving an average of 2,287 kWh. The program only reports electric spending and savings.

Multifamily Programs

LG&E does not offer energy efficiency programs targeted at multifamily properties.

Last Updated: June 2017

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

Louisville Gas and Electric (LG&E) has not yet committed to providing the Green Button data sharing platform for its customers. LG&E does not provide Louisville’s building managers with automatic benchmarking data for use in Portfolio Manager. In terms of the provision of aggregated energy usage information for community-planning to the city, LG&E provides quarterly data on residential, commercial, industrial, and public utility electricity and natural gas consumption to the Louisville Metro Government Office of Sustainability. At this time, the City of Louisville does not advocate to the state for improvements in data provision by its utilities.

Last Updated: January 2017

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Water Efficiency

The Louisville Water Company has not established any water efficiency programs, policies, or goals.

Energy Efficiency and Self-Generation

At this point, the City of Louisville has not established a goal or programs for energy efficiency through the city’s water service operation system. However, The Louisville Water Company and the Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District are both participating in the Effective Utility Management program that was developed by the Water Research Foundation, Water Environment Federation, EPA and others to set metrics for utilities to become more efficient and sustainable operationally. The city’s water system does not self-generate its own energy.

Green Stormwater Infrastructure

Louisville’s Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) offers monetary incentives for green infrastructure projects on private property based on the amount of rainwater the installation manages on-site. The Louisville’s Office of Sustainability will match MSD’s incentive $1 for $1 up to $10,000 for project receiving less than $50,000 from MSD. Projects that receive up to $75,000 are considered on a case-by-case basis. The 2017 budget includes funds for a more robust green roof incentive program.

Last Updated: January 2017

Score: 12 out of 30 points
Transportation Summary List All

The transportation authority serving the City of Louisville is the Transit Authority of River City. The Transit Authority provides the public transportation for the city and the broader metropolitan area, including bus and trolley service. The Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Authority is the COG and the Louisville Area MPO is the MPO in charge of conducting metropolitan transportation planning. Their area of jurisdiction encompasses Louisville, and many surrounding counties, cities, and towns in Kentucky and Indiana. The Department of Public Works is the city agency charged with managing the city’s transportation network.

Last updated: January 2017

Location Efficiency List All

Louisville has not yet implemented location efficient zoning codes to be used across the city or in any specific neighborhood. The city’s parking code requires 1 space minimum across urban areas, and 2 spaces in suburban areas. A 10% reduction is allowed for development near transit routes. A 30% reduction is allowed if a transportation demand management plan is submitted. A 50% reduction is allowed in Traditional Form Districts. There are no parking requirements in the downtown area. There are no incentives available through the city to promote location efficiency.

Last updated: January 2017

Mode Shift List All

Modal Share Targets

Louisville has not yet developed targets to promote a modal shift in transportation.

Car and Bicycle Sharing

There are two car sharing programs currently available to the residents and visitors of Louisville, enterprise CarShare and zipcar. A bikesharing program is currently available with three stations in service, Louisville Bcycle.

Complete Streets

Louisville has not yet written or codified a Complete Streets Policy.

Last updated: January 2017

Transit List All

The TA River City and Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Authority systems that serve Louisville have received $83,981,659 in average annual funding from 2011-2015. This funding level is $65.69 per resident in the service territory of the agency, putting the city in the fifth highest category ($50-99) in transit funding. 

The Transit Connectivity Index measures transit service levels. It is based on the number of bus routes and train stations within walking distance for households scaled by frequency of service. Louisville’s Transit Connectivity Index value is 11, putting it in the fourth highest category (5-14) in transit connectivity. 

Last updated: January 2017

Efficient VehiclesList All

At this time, Louisville does not offer incentives for citizens to purchase hybrid, plug-in, or EV vehicles. There are no incentives available for the construction of EV charging infrastructure. This city has 18 EV charging stations available for public use

Last updated: January 2017

Freight List All

Sustainable freight plan

The city of Louisville is part of a broader freight to increase freight efficiency.

Smart freight

Louisville does not employ an internet-based application or service to coordinate freight transport

Last updated: January 2017

Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Move Louisville is the city’s 20-year multi-modal plan that aims to fix and maintain the existing infrastructure in the city and reduce the number of miles that Louisvillians drive by providing and improving mobility options. Sustain Louisville is another plan that contains a goal to decrease transportation-related greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2020.

Last updated: January 2017

Low-Income in Transit-Oriented Development Areas List All

Louisville’s Creating Affordable Residences for Economic Success (Louisville CARES) revolving loan program gives points for projects that are located within ¼ to ½ mile of a TARC stop. Projects have to meet a minimum score of 60 points to be reviewed by the CARES loan committee. If they’re approved, they will get a low interest rate loan to create new affordable multifamily units.

Last updated: January 2017