State and Local Policy Database


City Scorecard Rank


Louisville, KY

27.00Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Local Government Score:
2 out of 10 points
Local Government Climate and Energy Goals List All

The City of Louisville released the Sustain Louisville plan to guide municipal and community sustainability action.

Climate Mitigation Goal

The city does not have a climate mitigation or greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal for municipal operations.

Energy Reduction Goal

Louisville aims to reduce local government energy use 30% by 2020, using a 2010 baseline.

Renewable Energy Goal

Louisville has a goal to increase the use of renewable energy in city-owned buildings 50% by 2025.

Last updated: March 2020

Procurement and Construction List All

Fleet Policies and Composition

Louisville does not have a procurement policy that includes a requirement for the purchase of EVs, but tries to replace all of its vehicles with more fuel efficient ones, when possible. Louisville’s municipal fleet is currently composed of 2.6% efficient vehicles, including hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric vehicles.

Public Lighting

We did not find information regarding the adoption of a policy requiring efficient outdoor lighting, such as the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. We could not confirm if Louisville has a streetlight upgrade program.

Onsite renewable systems

We were unable to find information regarding onsite renewable energy systems in Louisville.  

Inclusive procurement 

We could not verify if the city has inclusive procurement and contracting processes.

Last updated: March 2020

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking 

Louisville uses EnergyCAP to evaluate building energy use and to identify and prioritize opportunities to increase energy efficiency in its buildings.

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategies

In 2013, Louisville signed an Energy Savings Performance Contract with Johnson Controls, which was designed to provide $27 million in energy-efficient upgrades and repairs in municipal-owned buildings. ESPC progress reports on facility improvement measures, which include energy and cost savings, help the city determine and prioritize retrofit opportunities. 

Public Workforce Commuting

Louisville has a telework policy for city employees.

Last updated: July 2020

Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 6.5 out of 15 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

The City of Louisville developed the Sustain Louisville plan to guide the city’s sustainability initiatives.

Last updated: March 2020

Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Louisville adopted a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% below 2016 levels by 2050. ACEEE was unable to project if the city will achieve its near-term community-wide GHG emissions reduction goal because insufficient GHG emissions data were available for our analysis.

Energy Reduction Goal

The Sustain Louisville plan includes a goal to reduce per capita energy use 25% below 2012 levels by 2025.

Renewable Energy Goal

The Louisville Metro Council passed a resolution in 2020 calling for 100% clean energy community-wide by 2040.

Energy Data Reporting

The city’s tracks community energy use data internally, but these have not been made public.

Last updated: September 2020

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.

Accountability to Equity

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: March 2020

Clean Distributed Energy SystemsList All

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

Last updated: March 2020

Mitigation of Urban Heat Islands List All

UHI Mitigation Goal

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

UHI Policies and Programs

The city’s Land Development Code allows for conservation subdivisions that encourage the permanent protection of land alongside dense residential development patterns.

Louisville Metro Government offers a Cool Roof Rebate Program for residential and commercial properties. The city also offers dollar-for-dollar incentives for projects incorporating green infrastructure in development.

Last updated: March 2020

Buildings Policies
Score: 5.5 out of 30 points
Buildings Summary List All

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

Last updated: September 2020

Building Energy Code AdoptionList All


The State of Kentucky requires its local jurisdictions to follow the 2018 Kentucky Building Code (KBC) and 2018 Kentucky Residential Code (KRC). The 2018 KBC references the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for commercial buildings and the 2009 IECC for residential buildings. Louisville Metro Government advocates for the adoption of the latest codes including the International Energy Conservation Codes (IECC) for commercial and residential structures. To learn more about the required building codes for the State of Kentucky, please visit the State Policy Database


Commercial properties must comply with the 2018 KBC. The city’s zEPI score for their commercial energy code is 58.6.


Residential properties must comply with the 2018 KRC. The city’s zEPI score for their residential energy code is 68.4.

Solar- and EV-ready

The city has not passed an ordinance mandating new construction be solar- and/or EV-ready.

Last updated: September 2020

Building Energy Code Enforcement and ComplianceList All

Louisville has staff of 50 FTE's dedicated to building code enforcement, but we could not confirm if at least one inspector was solely dedicated to energy code compliance. The city verifies energy code compliance through plan reviews, site inspections, and performance testing as required by the energy code. The city provides upfront support to building developers when requested.

Last updated: September 2020

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All


Louisville offers incentives through the Energy Project Assessment District. The city began offering financing for energy efficiency projects in commercial buildings over a twenty year term. The program is similar to PACE financing programs. Commercial building owners can find energy efficiency incentives through the Louisville Energy Alliance.

Voluntary programs

The Louisville Energy Alliance runs the Kilowatt Crackdown, a voluntary program that encourages building owners to take energy-saving actions. 

Last updated: September 2020

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

The city does not have programs committed to developing a dedicated energy efficiency and/or renewable energy workforce.

Last updated: September 2020

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 1.5 out of 15 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: March 2020

Electric & Gas Energy Efficiency Programs and SavingsList All

In 2018, according to EIA, LG&E achieved 57,775 MWh in net incremental savings, representing 0.48% of retail sales. In 2018, LG&E spent $15,286,000 on energy efficiency programs, which represents 1.41% of its retail revenue.

In 2018, LG&E either did not spend or did not report spending or savings 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: March 2020

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. Measures include air and duct sealing, attic and wall insulation, energy-efficient water devices, heating and cooling tune-ups, LED lightbulbs, programmable thermostats, and refrigerator and window air conditioner replacements. 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. LG&E works with agencies within the community to identify customers to identify high energy users and help direct them towards the program and other resources.

We were unable to confirm LG&E low-income program savings and customers served in 2018.

Multifamily Programs

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

Last Updated: May 2020

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

Louisville Gas & Electric does not provide building managers with automated benchmarking data through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager for multitenant commercial or multifamily buildings. The City of Louisville does not advocate for better access to utility data for ratepayers or the establishment of data-sharing agreements between the city and its utilities.

Last Updated: March 2020

Renewable Energy Efforts of Energy UtilitiesList All

Renewable Energy Incentives

In 2018, LG&E did not provide renewable energy incentives for the construction of new distributed solar or wind systems.

City-Led Efforts to Decarbonize the Electric Grid

The Louisville Metro Office of Advanced Planning and Sustainability is currently in discussions with LG&E on options to finance the development of a solar field through their Solar Share Program. The Louisville Metro Council is considering a resolution to support 100% clean renewable energy goals for the Metro Government operations by 2030, and a 100% clean energy goal for the community by 2040.

Last Updated: March 2020

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

City-wide water efficiency and goals

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

Water plant efficiency and self-generation

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. MSD is following an EUM construct to reduce energy usage and is performing an energy audit/study for application at treatment and pumping facilities. Louisville Water Company (LWC) has an overall energy management strategy to minimize energy costs in its production department. This includes real-time demand management and longer-term engineering solutions to evaluate and modify pumps/motors to respond to changing system conditions.  LWC also has incorporated energy saving devices (motion sensors/LED lighting in our offices) in its facilities management area.

Methane is captured and used as a supplemental fuel in the Rotary Drum Drying process at the wastewater plants.

Last Updated: March 2020

Score: 11.5 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

Sustainable Transportation Planning List All


Sustainable Transportation Plan

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.

VMT/GHG Target and Stringency

Move Louisville contains a goal to reduce VMT 500,000 miles daily by 2040. In addition, Sustain Louisville set a goal to decrease transportation-related GHG emissions 20% by 2020 from 2009 levels. This goal requires a 1.8% reduction per year.

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

The City does track its progress toward its VMT and GHG targets. However, it is currently not on track to meet either.

Last Updated: March 2019

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning Codes

Louisville has not yet implemented location efficient zoning codes to be used across the city or in any specific neighborhood.

Residential Parking Policies

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. The remainder of the Louisville Metro area has parking maximums.

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosure

The City has a “Mixed Residential Development Incentive” that allows multi-family dwellings in a single-family zoning district with a density bonus.

Last Updated: March 2019

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Targets

Louisville Metro has a goal to increase bicycle ridership 100% from 2012 levels and increase public transit ridership 25%.

Progress Achieved Toward Mode Shift Targets

No progress has been achieved, as there are no targets in place.

Complete Streets

Louisville has a complete streets policy in place.

Car Sharing

There are two car sharing programs currently available to the residents and visitors of Louisville, enterprise CarShare and zipcar. As this time, the City does not have a formal policy in place to provide dedicated on-street and off-street parking for carshare vehicles.

Bike Sharing

Louisville has a strong cycling community. In 2016, the city earned a silver status from the League of American Bicyclists as a Cycle Friendly Community. Building off this success, Louisville launched a bikeshare program, LouVelo, in May 2017. The network includes 305 bikes and 28 stations. In the first year of operation, 3,903 riders used the systems, 15,359 rides were taken, and 7,688 miles were ridden.

Last Updated: May 2019

Transit List All

Transportation Funding

The TA River City and Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Authority systems that serve Louisville have received $38,091,174 in average annual funding from 2013-2017. This funding level is $29.80 per resident in the service territory of the agency, putting the city in the fourth highest category ($20-49) in transit funding.

Access to Transit Services

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 6.4, putting it in the fourth highest category (5-6.99) in transit connectivity.

Last Updated: March 2019

Efficient VehiclesList All

Vehicle Purchase Incentives

At this time, Louisville does not offer incentives for citizens to purchase hybrid, plug-in, or EV vehicles.

Vehicle Infrastructure Incentives

There are no incentives available for the construction of EV charging infrastructure.

EV Charging Locations

The City owns 43 charging stations available for public use.

Renewable Charging Incentives

At this time, the City of Louisville has no incentives or requirements available for the installation of private or public EV charging infrastructure powered by renewable energy (solar, wind, etc.).

Last Updated: March 2019

Freight System EfficiencyList All

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

Last Updated: March 2019

Clean, Efficient Transportation for Low-Income CommunitiesList All

Affordable New TOD Housing Policy

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.

Connecting Existing Affordable Housing Stock to Efficient Transportation Options

Louisville does not currently provide rebates or incentives to low-income residents for efficient transportation options.

Low-Income Access to High Quality Transit

At this time, the City of Louisville does not provide low-income households with access to high-quality transit.

Last Updated: March 2019