State and Local Policy Database


City Scorecard Rank


Reno, NV

22.00Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 2 out of 15 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

The City of Reno released the 2019 Sustainability and Climate Action Plan.

Last updated: September 2021

Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Reno adopted a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% below 2008 levels by 2050, with an interim reduction goal of 28% below 2008 levels by 2025. 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 ReEnergize Reno initiative set goals to increase commercial, industrial, and multifamily efficiency by 20% by 2025.

Renewable Energy Goal

The Climate Action Plan includes a goal to increase renewable electricity generation to 50% by 2030. 

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

We could not verify if the city has 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, however, the city states the intention to increase their tree canopy in the Master Plan.

UHI 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. 

Last updated: September 2021

Buildings Policies
Score: 13.5 out of 30 points
Buildings Summary List All

The City of Reno has the authority to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. The city implements a benchmarking ordinance for large commercial and multifamily buildings. 

Last Update: June 2021

Building Energy CodesList All


The State of Nevada allows local jurisdictions to adopt building energy codes at the municipal level. Nevada has adopted the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with state amendments for residential and commercial buildings. Reno has exceeded the state code and adopted the 2018 IECC for residential and commercial buildings. To learn more about the building codes and requirements for the State of Nevada, please visit the State Policy Database.


Commercial properties must comply with the 2018 IECC. The city’s zEPI score for its commercial energy code is 45.3.


Residential properties must comply with the 2018 IECC. The city’s zEPI score for its residential energy code is 54.1.

Solar-readiness policies

The city has not passed an ordinance mandating new construction be solar-ready.

EV-charging readiness and infrastructure policies

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

Low-energy use requirements

We could not find information on whether the city sets low-energy use requirements for municipal or certain private buildings.

Last Update: June 2021

Building Energy Code Compliance and EnforcementList All

Reno staffs three to five full-time employees solely dedicated to energy code enforcement. The city does not require plan reviews, site inspections or performance testing to verify code compliance. The city offers training on energy code compliance through ReEnergize Reno. 

Last Update: June 2021

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All

Commercial and multifamily benchmarking

Reno adopted the Energy and Water Efficiency Program in January 2019. The program requires commercial and multifamily buildings 30,000 square feet and greater to benchmark energy and water performance. The city also created the voluntary ReEnergize Reno program to improve building energy and water efficiency by 20% by 2025. Participating buildings must track energy and water data through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and disclose results to the City of Reno. The city offers technical support to participating properties.

Cross-cutting requirements

Reno's Energy and Water Efficiency Program requires building owners to achieve performance targets twice within seven years of their baseline, or pursue other measures, such as an energy audit, LEED certification, or participation in the utility-sponsored energy efficiency program. 


Reno allows commercial building owners access to PACE financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Voluntary programs

The ReEnergize Reno program seeks to improve the efficiency of commercial, industrial, and multifamily buildings by cutting energy and water waste in large buildings. 

Last Update: August 2021

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

The city does not have programs committed to developing dedicated energy efficiency and/or renewable energy workforce. Reno does offer an educational program in which the city hosts a monthly workshop series about green building and energy efficiency in commercial buildings.

Last Update: June 2021

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

Sustainable Transportation Plan

Reno highlights reducing VMT in its 2017 Sustainability Report but does not have a specific goal or stand-alone sustainable transportation plan.

VMT/GHG Targets and Stringency

Reno does not have a VMT/GHG target in place for the transportation sector.

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

Reno does not track progress towards a VMT/GHG target.

Last Updated: December 2021

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning Codes

The city's MU district is intended to promote an urban pattern of mixed-use development. The MU district is located adjacent to existing/planned high-frequency transit corridors, or where higher pedestrian activity is desired. The district accommodates an integrated mix of higher-density residential, commercial, retail, employment, and other service-oriented uses. Higher-intensity uses are located adjacent to designated Urban Corridors (Virginia Street, Fourth Street, Mill Street, and Plumb Lane), with lower intensities key transit streets with lower intensities near the adjacent residential districts. 

Residential Parking Policies

The vast majority of developments require 1 parking space per a certain number of sq. ft.

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosure

We were not able to confirm whether Reno has location efficiency incentives or disclosure requirements.

Last Updated: December 2021

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Targets

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

Progress Achieved Toward Mode Shift Targets

Reno does not track progress towards their mode shift target.

Complete Streets

Reno does not currently have a complete streets policy.

Last Updated: December 2021

Public Transit List All

Transportation Funding

The transportation entities that serve the City of Reno have received $19,461,067.20 on average annually between 2015 and 2019. That equates to roughly $59.00 per capita between 2015 and 2019 within the Authority's service area. 

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 Long Beach Transit Connectivity Index value is 4.3, scoring 0 points in the City Scorecard.

Last Updated: December 2021

Efficient VehiclesList All

Vehicle Purchase Incentives

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

Vehicle Infrastructure Incentives

PowerShift by NV Energy offers two programs, one for apartments and one for businesses. Rebates and incentives are available that cover up to 75% of level 2 or 50% of DCFC project costs. 

EV Charging Locations

The City has 79 charging ports available for public use, equivalent to 30.9 ports per 100,000 people.

Electric School Bus Goal

Reno does not have an electric school bus goal.

EV Transit Bus Goal

Reno does not have an EV transit bus goal.

Last Updated: December 2021

Freight System EfficiencyList All

Reno 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

Reno does not have any requirements or incentives in place to encourage the development or preservation of affordable housing in transit-served areas.

Connecting Existing Affordable Housing Stock to Efficient Transportation Options

Reno does not provide any subsidies for efficient transportation options to low-income residents. 

Last Updated: December 2021

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 0.5 out of 15 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

NV Energy, an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric and natural gas utility for the City of Reno. The State of Nevada has established requirements for energy efficiency programs provided by the state's investor-owned electric utilities, as well as integrated resource planning. To learn more about the state requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Nevada page of the State Database.

The Truckee Meadows Water Authority (TMWA) is the community-owned water utility that provides the City of Reno with drinking water services, wastewater treatment, and stormwater management.

Last Updated: July 2021

Electricity and Natural Gas Efficiency SavingsList All

In 2019, according to EIA, NV Energy achieved 169,573 MWh of electric net electric savings at the meter, which represents 0.76% of its retail sales. In 2019, NV Energy spent $22,079,000 on energy efficiency programs, which represents 0.79% of its retail revenue.

In 2019, NV Energy achieved 33.50 MMtherms of net natural gas savings at the meter, which represents 0.17% of its retail sales across the utility’s service territory. In 2019, NV Energy spent $423,807 on natural gas energy efficiency programs, which equates to $2.46 per residential customer.

 These savings figures cover the utility’s entire service jurisdiction, not just Reno.

NV Energy offers electric and natural gas efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industry customers.

At this time, the City of Reno does not have a formal partnership with NV Energy 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

NV Energy offers a free qualified appliance replacement program to income-qualified customers. This program allows for the replacement of old inefficient appliances such as refrigerators and electric clothes dryers with new efficient models. Savings, spending, and customers served for NV Energy's low-income programs were not available in 2019.

At this time, Southwest Gas does not offer energy efficiency programs targeted at low-income customers.

Multifamily Programs

At this time, NV Energy and Southwest Gas do not offer energy efficiency programs targeted at multifamily properties.

Last Updated: August 2021

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

NV Energy does not provide building managers with automated benchmarking data through ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager for multitenant commercial or multifamily buildings.

The city’s 2017 Sustainability Report includes a greenhouse gas inventory with some community energy emissions data. The City of Reno does not regularly collect community-wide energy usage data at the aggregate level for community planning and evaluation purposes. The City of Reno 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

NV Energy does not currently have a carbon emissions reduction goal in place.

City-Led Efforts to Decarbonize the Electric Grid

The City of Reno provides regular updates to the City Council on renewable energy legislation and also hired a local attorney to monitor the Nevada Public Utility Commission.

Last Updated: July 2021

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Citywide Water Efficiency and Goals

The energy and water utilities do not offer joint energy and water efficiency programs.

At this point, the City of Reno has not established a water savings target or goal. However, TMWA does have a water conservation plan.

Water Plant Efficiency and Self-Generation

The water utility has not set specific energy efficiency targets or strategies. The city’s water system does not self-generate its own energy.

Last Updated: July 2021

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

The City of Reno launched the ReEnergize Reno initiative to drive climate and energy action in the community and local government operations. The city recently announced a partnership with the State of Nevada and Washoe County to track GHG emissions and develop a carbon emissions baseline.

Climate Mitigation Goal

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

Energy Reduction Goal

Reno participates in the Better Buildings Challenge to achieve a municipal energy use reduction of 20% below 2014 levels by 2025. To achieve this goal, Reno must reduce per capita energy use by 3.5% annually.

Renewable Energy Goal

We were unable to find information regarding a municipal renewable energy goal.

Last updated: June 2021

Procurement and Construction Policies List All

Fleet Policies and Composition

We were unable to find information on a procurement policy or fuel-efficient requirements. However, the Master Plan noted that the city would consider the adoption of sustainable procurement guidelines, including City fleet vehicles. In addition, the city's Climate Action Plan includes a goal to reduce carbon emissions from the city's fleet by 28% by 2025. We were unable to find data regarding fleet composition. 

Public Lighting 

We were unable to find information regarding the adoption of a policy requiring efficient outdoor lighting, such as the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. We were unable to confirm if Reno has an outdoor lighting upgrade program.

Onsite and offsite renewable systems

We were unable to find information regarding onsite and offsite renewable energy systems in Reno.

Inclusive procurement

We were unable to verify if the city has inclusive procurement and contracting processes.

Last updated: June 2021

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking 

Reno benchmarks all occupied municipal buildings. Reno's Energy Benchmarking, Reporting, and Transparency Ordinance requires city buildings over 10,000 square feet and fire stations to benchmark energy use. 

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategy

We were unable to find information regarding a retrofit strategy in Reno.

Last updated: June 2021