State and Local Policy Database


City Scorecard Rank


Oakland, CA

69.50Scored out of 100Updated 2/2016
Local Government Score:
7 out of 15 points
Local Government Summary List All

Oakland does not have a goal for its local government operations. The city has a Green Building Ordinance that addresses new municipal buildings, a purchasing policy with energy-efficiency considerations, and outdoor lighting standards with energy-efficiency requirements. 

Updated: August 2017 

Local Government Energy Efficiency Goals List All

There is no GHG gas reduction or energy efficiency goal specific to local government operations in Oakland. 


Procurement and Construction List All

Vehicle Fleets and Infrastructure

The city does not have fuel efficiency standards, however it did adopt the Green Fleet Resolution of 2003 which details commitments to address the operation, procurement and management of fleet vehicles in order to improve efficiency. Moreover, Oakland's street sweeping and solid waste vehicles have routes determined by software systems that incorporate GPS information.

Public Lighting

Oakland’s Outdoor Lighting Standards require good lighting design and energy efficiency. Its' guidelines are in accordance with the Illumination Engineering Society's lighting guidelines for all facilities. 

New Buildings and Equipment

The City's Green Building Ordinance requires LEED silver certification for all new municipal buildings. Additionally, Oakland's environmental preferable purchasing policy requires purchases of energy-efficient equipment with the most up-to-date energy efficiency functions.

Updated: August 2017

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking and Retrofitting

Over 90% of city buildings are benchmarked using the Energy Star Portfolio Manager in Oakland. The city's Energy Group conducts energy consumption and costs analyses to determine which public buildings are best suited to receive comprehensive retrofits. Moreover, as part of their Energy and Climate Action Plan, Oakland details several priority actions to improve energy efficiency in buildings via retrofits.

Public Workforce

Teleworking/flex schedules are allowed for certain employees. The Energy and Climate Action Plan also advocates for more flex schedules/telework policies to reduce commutes.

Updated: April 2017 

Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 8 out of 10 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

Oakland's community engagement occurs through the Climate Action Committee, which is charged with building a green economy through equitable development and the implementation of the city’s Energy and Climate Action Plan. Apart from having a community-wide greenhouse gas reduction goal, the city of Oakland has ordinances that address stormwater management, tree protection, and cool roofs. This city is also in the development stages of a sustainable ecodistrict. 

Updated: April 2017

Community-Wide Energy Efficiency GoalsList All

Oakland has established community-wide goals for greenhouse gas emissions reduction and energy efficiency through its Energy and Climate Action Plan (ECAP). The city has adopted a goal to achieve a reduction in GHG emissions of 36% by 2020 and 83% by 2050 (with a 2005 baseline). Part of this goal includes an energy use reduction target of 32%. 


In order to meet its community-wide greenhouse gas goal, Oakland would need to reduce emissions by 3.7% annually. 


Oakland is currently on track to achieve its' greenhouse gas reduction goal. 


The city annually reports progress towards these goals through the Sustainable Oakland Report. The city is not currently on track to meet its 2020 goal. 

Updated: August 2017

Efficient Distributed Energy Systems - District Energy and Combined Heat and PowerList All

The city has partnered with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Department of Energy, and NASA to develop an Eco district. The goal of this Eco district will be to build an efficient, block-scale energy/water/wastewater treatment-and-reuse-process prototype that can be applied to neighborhoods across California and the U.S. 

Updated: April 2017 

Mitigation of Urban Heat Islands List All

Oakland does not have an urban heat island mitigation goal. Title 16 of Oakland’s code and Oakland’s Creek Protection, Stormwater Management & Discharge Control Ordinance, addreses stormwater management, tree protection, cool roofs, and LID (Low Impact Development) standards.  

Updated: April 2017

Buildings Policies
Score: 18 out of 29 points
Buildings Summary List All

Okland does not have stretch codes in place, however, California statewide residential and commercial codes exceed the 2015 IECC standards and ASHRAE/IESNA 90.1-2013.

The City of Oakland has above-code energy efficiency requirements for certain buildings, internal staff dedicated solely to building code compliance, and several incentives to promote code compliance in single and multifamily buildings.

Updated: April 2017

Stringency of Energy CodesList All

The State of California allows its local jurisdictions to adopt building energy codes more stringent than the mandatory state codes. Title 24 outlines all California building codes. Title 24, Part 6 includes the California Energy Code and the California Building Energy Efficiency Standards (BEES). Title 24, Part 11 includes the California Green Building Code. The California Energy Code, BEES and California Green Building Codes have been updated in 2016 and are effective since January 1, 2017. The 2016 codes exceed the 2015 IECC standards and ASHRAE/IESNA 90.1-2013. To learn more about California’s building energy codes, please visit the State Policy Database.


The City has adopted a Green Building Ordinance specifying LEED Silver or equivalent for all new non-residential development. The statewide commercial code applicable to Oakland exceeds the 2015 IECC standards and ASHRAE/IESNA 90.1-2013.


The city has adopted a Green Building Ordinance specifying Green Point Rated (GPR) checklists for all new residential development.The statewide residential code applicable to Oakland exceeds the 2015 IECC standards.

Updated: April 2017

Building Energy Code Enforcement and ComplianceList All

The city of Oakland has internal staff dedicated solely to energy code compliance, however, they do not have any mandatory educational training programs to better prepare code officials to properly enforce the energy code.

The city provides code compliance support through BayREN programs for single and multi-family units. Additionally, Oakland offers energy code compliance assistance at the planning counter for all applicants. Oakland does not administer a code verification program.  

Updated: April 2017

Requirements and Incentives for Efficient Buildings List All

Green Building Requirements

The city’s Green Building Ordinance requires above-code energy efficiency requirements for certain categories of buildings. 

Energy Audit and Retrofit Requirements

There is no energy audit or retrofit requirement for residential or commercial buildings in Oakland.

Incentive and Financing for Efficient Buildings

Oakland offers several incentives for building improvements through BayREN and PACE programs.

Updated: April 2017

Benchmarking, Rating, & Transparency List All

Oakland does not have mandatory or voluntary programs to encourage building benchmarking in any sector. However, the Energy and Climate Action Plan does consider exploring the implementation of benchmarking policies, as they pursue their community-wide greenhouse gas emission reduction goals.

Updated: April 2017

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 14.5 out of 18 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary natural gas and electric utility serving Oakland. All gas and electric utility ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs available to PG&E customers in Oakland are offered either directly by the utility or through BayREN and East Bay Energy Watch. 

The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) provides water and sewage treatment services and drinking water for Oakland. This utility offers a range of water efficiency programs.  Oakland advocates for policy improvements in utility data access through the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition. 

Updated: April 2017

Electric & Gas Energy Efficiency Programs, Spending & SavingsList All

In 2015, PG&E achieved 772,000 MWh in net incremental savings, representing 0.90% of retail sales. To achieve these savings, PG&E spent $362,349,996 on electric efficiency programs in 2015, which equates to 2.77% of annual revenue. In 2015, PG&E reported savings of 22.00 MMtherms from natural gas efficiency programs, representing 1.19% of its retail sales. To achieve these savings, PG&E spent $74,216,264 on natural gas efficiency programs, which are normalized to $17.60 per residential customer. Spending on electricity and natural gas represented in this section covers the entire California service territory, not just Oakland. PG&E offers electric and natural gas efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers.

The City of Oakland partners with its energy utility through BayREN and the East Bay Energy Watch. The partnership runs energy efficiency programs available to single-family residential as well as commercial customers. 

Updated: April 2017

Low-Income & Multifamily EE Programs List All

Low-Income Programs

PG&E offers the Energy Savings Assistance Program to qualified low-income residential customers. In addition to providing home assessments, in-home individualized energy education, and health and safety services, the ESA program provides appliance upgrades, hot water measures, building envelope upgrades, HVAC repair and replacement, lighting, and smart power strips in order to reduce energy consumption in low-income households. The program is available to single family, multifamily, and manufactured homes. In 2016, PG&E served 72,459 low-income PG&E customers, saving 25,859 MWh and 1.52 MMtherms. PG&E is currently working to launch a multifamily whole building low-income program that will be targeted to owners of qualifying low-income deed restricted housing. This program is implemented statewide by investor owned utilities under the direction of the California Public Utilities Commission. PG&E partners with the State's low-income energy programs (i.e. LIHEAP, WAP, LIWP), and is currently discussing leveraging their resources in 2017.

Multifamily Programs

PG&E offers the California New Homes Multifamily Program. This comprehensive program provides support for saving energy in the residential new construction sector with a cross-cutting focus on sustainable design and construction, green building practices, energy efficiency, and emerging technologies. Through a combination of education, design assistance and financial support, the programs work to encourage building and related industries to exceed California's Title 24 energy efficiency standards. Additionally, this utility offers the Multifamily Properties Energy-Efficiency Rebates Program. This comprehensive program provides rebates for the installation of energy-efficient products in apartment buildings, mobile home parks, and condominium complexes. Rebates are available for products installed in both common areas and units.

Updated: April 2017

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

In order for customers to access their own energy data, PG&E makes use of the Green Button data sharing platform for its electric customers only. In order to assist large building managers with accessing aggregated energy data for building benchmarking, PG&E provides automatic data entry into Portfolio Manager upon receipt of written consent from each customer responsible for energy purchases. PG&E does provide the City of Oakland with community aggregate data for public consumption. Oakland advocates for policy improvements in data access through the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition, the California Energy Commission and the PUC. 

Updated: April 2017 

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Water Efficiency

Oakland does not have any water savings targets in place. The regional water utility, East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD), funds a range of water efficiency programs. Additionally, The electric and water utility jointly administer a rebate program for the purchase of energy-efficient clothes washers.

Energy Efficiency and Self-Generation

EMBUD has not set an energy efficiency target for its operations. However, the utility does self-generate by producing methane used for anaerobic digesters.

Green Stormwater Infrastructure

Oakland is a partner of the County of Alameda’s Clean Water Program, which provides funding for community-based projects aimed at stormwater pollution prevention. Additionally, Oakland’s 2025 Master Plan incorporates strategies to manage stormwater runoff. 

Updated: April 2017

Score: 22 out of 28 points
Transportation Summary List All

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission is the MPO in charge of conducting metropolitan transportation planning. Its area of jurisdiction encompasses Oakland, and the cities and towns in the Bay Area. Oakland's Housing Element encourages mixed-used developments, while promoting incentives to low and medium income housing developments. Oakland has a complete streets policy, and a fully operational car sharing program.

Updated: April 2017

Location Efficiency List All

The City of Oakland’s 1998 General Plan includes a Land Use and Transportation Element, which directs development to Downtown and areas within a half mile of major transit corridors and commuter train stations. This strategy concentrates development where there is available land and transit, in order to reduce vehicle miles traveled and greenfield development and create compact, walkable neighborhood centers designated as Priority Development Areas in 2013. The city of Oakland offers incenctives to encourage mixed-use development; these are documented in the Housing Element.

Updated: April 2017

Mode Shift List All

Modal Share Targets

There are currently no modal share targets in the city of Oakland. 

Car and Bicycle Sharing

City-CarShare is an operational car sharing program in the city of Oakland. Bay Area BikeShare is currently planning to expand into Oakland to provide about 1,400 bikes for the city. 

Complete Streets

Oakland adopted its’ Complete Streets Policy in 2013 and has a NCSC score of 81.6.

Updated: April 2017 

Transit List All

The average spending from 2011 to 2015 in the largest transit system serving Oakland (Bay Area Rapid Transit System) amounts to a total of $1,131,741,377. Considering the Metropolitan Statistical Area population, this funding amounts to $3.60 of transit spending per capita.

Oakland has a Transit Connectivity Index score of 23.

Updated: April 2017 

Efficient VehiclesList All

Oakland does not offer any incentives for the purchase of hybrid or electric vehicles. However, the city does provide aproximately 28 electric vehicle charging stations for public use .  Additionally, Oakland has updated construction standards to incorporate EV readiness requirements to lower the costs of installing EV infraestructure. 

Updated: April 2017

Freight List All

The city of Oakland does not have a sustainable freight transportation strategy, nor does it have internet based applications to coordinate freight transportation.

Updated: April 2017 

Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Oakland's Department of Transportation's strategic plan includes updating Oakland's guidelines to establish vehicle miles traveled (VMT) as the primary metric to assess transportation impacts. The plan does not, however, contain a VMT reduction target. 

Updated: April 2017

Low-Income in Transit-Oriented Development Areas List All

Oakland's Housing Element contains a goal to promote the development of adequate housing for low- and moderate-income Households. The city targets development and marketing resources in priority development areas. The Housing Element details Oakland's policies to encourage mixed use development incentives, transit-oriented development, and new development at a range of prices. Additionally, Oakland offers density bonuses for low and moderate-income units.

Updated: April 2017