State and Local Policy Database

New Haven

City Scorecard Rank


New Haven, CT

24.50Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 3.5 out of 15 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

The City of New Haven developed the Climate and Sustainability Framework to guide the city’s actions against climate change.

Last updated: September 2021

Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Through the Climate and Sustainability Framework, New Haven established a goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, with an interim goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 55% below 1999 levels by 2030. Based on ACEEE’s analysis of past years emissions data, ACEEE projects that the city will meet its near-term community-wide GHG emissions reduction goal. 

Energy Reduction 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 2021

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: September 2021

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: September 2021

Mitigation of Heat Islands List All

UHI Mitigation Goal

We could not verify if the city has adopted a quantifiable urban heat island mitigation goal.

UHI Policies and Programs

New Haven requires public plazas to use design materials that are highly reflective and/or pervious pavement or vegetative pavers.

Last updated: September 2021

Buildings Policies
Score: 5 out of 30 points
Buildings Summary List All

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 or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: July 2021

Building Energy CodesList All


The State of Connecticut requires residential and commercial buildings to comply with the Connecticut State Building Code. The state’s code references the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). To learn more about the required building codes for the State of Connecticut, please visit the State Policy Database


New Haven requires 2015 IECC for commercial buildings The city’s zEPI score for their commercial energy code is 51.6.


New Haven requires 2015 IECC for residential buildings. The city’s zEPI score for their residential energy code is 55.5.

Solar-readiness policies

We could not find information on whether the city has adopted solar-ready ordinances.

EV-charging readiness and infrastructure policies

We could not find information on whether the city has adopted EV-ready ordinances.

Last updated: July 2021

Building Energy Code Compliance and EnforcementList All

We could not find information on the number of full time employees the city staffs to enforce the energy code. The city requires plan reviews, site inspections, and performance testing to verify code compliance. We could not find information regarding upfront support for energy code compliance.

Last updated: July 2021

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All


The City has participated in and promotes the State Green Bank's C-PACE program. The City's Livable Cities Initiative has an Energy Efficiency Rehabilitation Assitance Program that offers financial assistance for energy efficiency retrofits.  

Last updated: October 2021

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

We could not verify if the city has programs committed to developing a dedicated energy efficiency and/or renewable energy workforce.

Last updated: July 2021

Score: 5.5 out of 30 points
Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Sustainable Transportation Plan

New Haven's Climate Action Plan, released in January 2018, includes several measures to reduce transportation GHG emissions.

VMT/GHG Targets and Stringency

New Haven has set a transportation goal of 20% cut in car use and a reduction in GHG emissions by 2020

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

New Haven is making progress and is seeing a decline in its transportation GHG emissions compared to its baseline.

Last Updated: December 2021

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning Codes

New Haven’s zoning code includes mixed-use district overlays to encourage compact, mixed-use development. 

Residential Parking Policies

New Haven is currently working to eliminate parking minimums and encourage higher density development by rezoning three "commercial corridors." 

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosure

New Haven does not provide location efficiency incentives or require location efficiency disclosure.

Last Updated: December 2021

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Targets

New Haven does not have a mode shift target in place for the transportation sector.

Progress Achieved Toward Mode Shift Targets

New Haven does not track progress towards a mode shift target.

Complete Streets

New Haven’s complete streets policy scored an 46.8 out of 100 according to the National Complete Streets Coalition.

Last Updated: December 2021

Public Transit List All

Transportation Funding

We could not determine the total funding allocated to transit entities serving the City of New Haven from 2014-2018.

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. The City of New Haven Transit Connectivity Index value is 7.9, scoring 1.5 points in the City Scorecard.

Last Updated: December 2021

Efficient VehiclesList All

Vehicle Purchase Incentives

At this time, New Haven does not offer incentives for citizens to purchase hybrid, plug-in, or EV vehicles. The city does however offer free metered parking for hybrid and alternative fuel vehicle cars. The ordinance applies to vehicles registered in New Haven.

Vehicle Infrastructure Incentives

We could not confirm if the city has any incentives in place for EV charging infrastructure installation.

EV Charging 

The City has 44 charging ports available for public use, equivalent to 33.8 ports per 100,000 people.

Electric School Bus Goal

New Haven does not have an electric school bus goal.

EV Transit Bus Goal

New Haven does not have an EV transit bus goal.

Last Updated: December 2021

Freight System EfficiencyList All

New Haven does not have a sustainable freight transportation plan in place nor does it have any policies that address freight efficiency.

Last Updated: December 2021

Clean, Efficient Transportation for Low-Income CommunitiesList All

Affordable New TOD Housing Policy

The City appointed an Affordable Housing Task Force in 2018 to examine the issue of affordable housing broadly in the city. The Task Force submitted a report with 44 recommendations including easing zoning code's minimum lot area requirements to allow for use of empty lots and allow more density. We were unable to determine if an official policy has been established since the report was submitted. 

Connecting Existing Affordable Housing Stock to Efficient Transportation Options

The City of New Haven offers discounted fare for its bike share program for low-income users. The annual unlimited ride pass is discounted from $90 per year to $15 per year.

Last Updated: December 2021

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 5.5 out of 15 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

United Illuminating Company, an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric utility for the City of New Haven. The primary natural gas supplier for New Haven is Southern Connecticut Gas, an IOU. In 2007, the Connecticut legislature enacted Public Act 07-242, an act concerning electricity and energy efficiency, which places new requirements for energy efficiency and establishes new regulatory mechanisms for utilities. To learn more about the state requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Connecticut page of the State Database

The South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority is the water utility that provides the City of New Haven with drinking water services, while the Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority manages the city’s wastewater treatment and stormwater management. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Electricity and Natural Gas Efficiency SavingsList All

In 2019, according to EIA, United Illuminating achieved 60,806 MWh of net electric savings at the meter, which represents 1.22% of its electric retail sales across the utility’s entire service jurisdiction, not only New Haven. In 2019, United Illuminating spent $29,857,000 on electric energy efficiency programs, which represents 3.91% of its electric retail revenue. 

In 2019, Southern Connecticut Gas reported 1.93 MMtherms of net natural gas savings at the meter, which represents 0.64% of its retail sales across the utility’s service territory. In 2019, Southern Connecticut Gas spent $13,089,459 on natural gas energy efficiency, which equates to $72.50 per residential gas customer. These savings figures cover both United Illuminating and Southern Connecticut Gas’s entire service jurisdiction, not just New Haven. 

United Illuminating offers electric efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers. Southern Connecticut Gas similarly offers natural gas efficiency programs to residential and commercial/industrial customers. 

At this time, the City of New Haven does not have a formal partnership with United Illuminating or Southern Connecticut Gas in the form of a jointly developed or administered energy saving strategy, plan, or agreement. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Low-Income & Multifamily EE Programs List All

Low-Income Programs 

Both United Illuminating and Southern Connecticut Gas participate in the Home Energy Solutions—Income-Eligible Program (HES-IE) available to qualified low-income residential customers in both single and multifamily buildings. Eversource also runs New Construction, Retail Products, and Residential Financing programs for income-eligible customers. The HES-IE program provides no-cost weatherization measures and low-cost energy efficiency upgrades. Direct-install weatherization measures include health and safety testing, blower door guided air sealing, duct sealing, installation of efficient domestic hot water products such as low flow aerators, low flow showerheads, and pipe wrap. Additionally, during the direct install visit the entire home is evaluated for the potential of add-on measure installations which are classified as appliances, insulation, window, hot water systems, HVAC system replacements. There may be a co-pay associated with add-on measures. 

HES-IE program implementers work with community partners to promote the program, such as local public health departments, nonprofits running lead abatement programs, hospitals, local housing agencies, and Community Action Agencies. HES-IE also coordinates with the Weatherization Assistance Program, as the programs cost share all energy efficiency products to help maximize the WAP funding on health and safety barriers. Additionally, HES-IE partners with lead abatement programs and hospitals to help leverage their health and safety funds to incorporate energy efficiency into as many homes as possible. 

In 2019, United Illuminating achieved 4,226 MWh of savings, while spending $4,180,741 on its low-income program and served 6,538 customers. Southern Connecticut Gas’s low-income programs achieved 0.30 MMtherms of savings, while spending $3,049,996 on its low-income programs and served 5,314 customers in 2019. 

Multifamily Programs 

Both United Illuminating and Southern Connecticut Gas participate in Energize Connecticut’s Multifamily Initiative. This comprehensive program provides customized solutions for existing multifamily properties with five or more dwelling units, and includes: assistance with energy efficiency upgrade projects, comprehensive energy assessments of the building's energy-saving opportunities, and incentives and financing for energy-saving efficiency upgrades regardless of fuel type. 

The Multifamily Initiative is offered to property managers, property owners, and architects for both market-rate and low-income properties. The Multifamily Initiative is open to any customer, regardless of heating fuel type, within the UI and SCG service territories. The Multifamily Initiative allows a customer to choose their own contractors and create their own contractual agreements with them for work completed. The Multifamily Initiative provides comprehensive energy efficiency upgrades by focusing on the building’s dwelling units, common areas, and exterior spaces. Tenant-occupied areas receive direct install measures, such as air sealing, hot water savings measures, ductwork sealing, and the installation of energy-efficient lighting. The Multifamily Initiative also provides incentivizes for add-on measures, which may include insulation, heating and cooling equipment, hot water heating equipment, appliances, windows, smart Thermostats, and lighting fixtures and controls. The Multifamily Initiative is tailored to the multifamily segment and combines aspects of the Companies’ residential energy efficiency programs, such as Home Energy Solutions (“HES”) and HES-Income Eligible, with the Companies’ commercial and industrial (“C&I”) programs, including the Energy Opportunities, Energy Conscious Blueprint, and Small Business Energy Advantage (“SBEA”) programs. This approach offers flexibility to multifamily property owners and their tenants to save energy and money under a seamless umbrella initiative. 

In 2019, United Illuminating’s multifamily efficiency programs achieved 2,804 MWh, while spending $1,426,603 and serving 5,227 housing units in 29 multifamily properties. In 2019, Southern Connecticut Gas saved 0.12 MMtherms while spending $389,922 and serving 4,611 housing units in 24 multifamily properties. 

Last Updated: August 2021

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

Southern Connecticut Gas provides automated benchmarking services through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager for commercial buildings. United Illuminating provides community wide energy usage information for planning and evaluation purposes for the city through the ENERGIZE CT website. The City of New Haven 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: July 2021  

Decarbonization and Climate Change Mitigation Efforts of Energy UtilitiesList All

Utility Climate Mitigation Goal  

In 2020, Avangrid, the parent company of United Illuminating, set a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35% by 2025 compared to 2015 levels (scope 1 emissions), and achieve carbon neutrality by 2035. To achieve 100% emissions reduction by 2035, Avangrid will need to reduce emissions by 5.9% annually from 2018 levels. 

City-Led Efforts to Decarbonize the Electric Grid 

The Board of Alders City Services and the Environmental Policy Committee recently voted unanimously in support of a proposed resolution that would have the city formally call on the state legislature and the governor to pass enabling legislation to allow for Community Choice Aggregation to be created in Connecticut. 

Last Updated: July 2021

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Citywide Water Efficiency and Goals 

At this time, the energy and water utilities do not offer joint energy and water efficiency programs. At this point, the City of New Haven has not established a water savings target or goal. 

Water Plant Efficiency and Self-Generation 

We could not confirm if the water utility has set specific energy efficiency targets or strategies. 

The Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority operates one of the largest processing facilities in the nation for disposing fats, oils, and grease (FOG) and processes this by heating to remove 99% of the water and then uses the result as supplemental fuel in the sludge incinerator. In addition, the GNHWPA issued a Request for Proposals for the beneficial use of thermal energy from the exhaust gases currently discharged by the sludge burning incinerator at the East Shore Treatment Facility. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Local Government Score:
3 out of 10 points
Local Government Climate and Energy Goals List All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Local government emissions reductions contribute towards the city's goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 55% below 1999 levels by 2030. ACEEE was unable to project if the city will achieve its near-term GHG emissions reduction goal for municipal operations because insufficient GHG emissions data were available for our analysis.

Energy Reduction Goal

We did not find information regarding an energy reduction goal for municipal operations.

Renewable Energy Goal

New Haven powers 100% of its government operations with renewable energy.

Last updated: June 2021

Procurement and Construction Policies List All

Fleet Policies and Composition

We could not find information on a formal fleet procurement policy or fuel efficiency requirements. However, New Haven lists in its Climate and Sustainability Framework a goal to improve vehicle efficiency through implementing an ordinance to require the municipal vehicle fleet to meet a municipal efficiency of 30 mpg. We were unable to find data regarding New Haven’s fleet composition. 

Public Lighting

New Haven has a zoning ordinance that addresses excessive light. The City has converted all of its streetlights to LED. 

Onsite and offsite renewable systems

We were unable to find information regarding onsite or offsite renewable energy systems installed by New Haven.

Inclusive procurement

While we could not verify if the City has applied the policy to energy projects, all construction and construction-related contracts over $150,000 are subject to a 25% minority-owned business enterprise goal.

Last updated: June 2021

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking

We were unable to find information regarding New Haven’s benchmarking practices, but the City's Climate and Sustainability Framework states the intent to create a benchmarking program.  

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategy

We were unable to find information regarding a comprehensive retrofit strategy in New Haven, but a retrofit strategy is listed as a goal in the City's Climate and Sustainability Framework.

Last updated: June 2021