New Coalition Of States And Governments On Building Performance Standards Is Important Step To Drive Down Pollution From The Buildings Sector

In response to the U.S. Conference of Mayors announcement today on building performance standards Evergreen Policy Advisor Nate Kinsey released the following statement:

“The first-of-its-kind coalition announced today represents an important step forward in the effort to create clean buildings nationwide. This move will allow the federal government, states, and cities to work together on strengthening and implementing building performance standards. Fossil-fuel appliances in buildings account for 12% of national greenhouse gas pollution and buildings consume 71% of the nation’s electricity annually. We are excited to see the Biden Administration is taking action to provide a roadmap and technical support to state and local jurisdictions to develop and implement building performance standards in partnership with front-line communities and labor groups by Earth Day 2024. This partnership will lower carbon pollution, clean up the air, improve building efficiency, and create jobs retrofitting existing buildings across the country as called for in the Evergreen Action Plan. 

“But to achieve President Biden’s goal of reducing building sector emissions by 50% by 2035, more has to be done. The administration must lead by example and aggressively implement robust federal building performance standards. The good news is that the Administration announced federal building performance standards in May 2021 and again in President Biden’s December Executive Order Catalyzing America’s Clean Energy Economy Through Federal Sustainability, which, when implemented will jumpstart investments in zero-emission building retrofits throughout the country and have powerful downstream supply chain effects for the entire industry. These federal building standards would have important trickle-down effects to enable more cities and states to effectively implement building performance standards in 2024 and beyond. But while the announcement today is a promising start, the administration will have to buckle down and move faster to fully implement these important standards—we are up against the ticking clock of climate change. Laying out the playbook doesn’t mean much if you don’t use it.”