Commercial, Energy Efficiency, GHG Emissions - August 3, 2023
Boston Bans Fossil Fuels in New City-Owned Buildings
Boston Mayor Michelle Wu signed an executive order(EO) eliminating the use of fossil fuels in new construction and major renovations of city buildings.
The executive order requires that all new municipal buildings and major renovations operate without fossil fuels, lowering emissions from the city’s building sector.
“Week after week, we see the signs of extreme heat, storms, and flooding that remind us of a closing window to take climate action,” said Mayor Michelle Wu in a statement. “The benefits of embracing fossil fuel-free infrastructure in our City hold no boundary across industries and communities, and Boston will continue using every possible tool to build the green, clean, healthy, and prosperous future our city deserves.”
In Boston municipal emissions constitute 2.3% of all of Boston’s carbon emissions, and over 70% of the city’s emissions are from buildings. The city owns over 16 million square feet of property.
All new buildings will be planned, designed, and constructed so that HVAC, hot water, and cooking systems will not combust or directly connect to fossil fuels for all municipal buildings. In addition to applying to all new buildings, it also impacts alterations where structural work is planned in 75% or more of the building’s square footage. Any project that replaces a building’s heating, ventilation, air conditioning or hot water system, or cooking equipment must eliminate fossil fuel combustion in the affected system.
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