Local Law 97

Are You Working to Comply With LL97?

An audit of your mechanical insulation is the best place to start! Identify opportunities for emission reductions quickly and easily with our complimentary no obligation ‘HEAT LOSS‘ Survey. Thermaxx will get you closer to compliance in 6-8 weeks!

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Why Is Mechanical Insulation The Best, Quickest, First Step on the Path to Comply?

  • Removable, reusable insulation for pipes, boilers, valves and mechanical equipment
  • Quickest and best ROI (on avg 2 yrs)
  • Least expensive and disruptive
  • Quickest to install and implement (6-8 weeks)Understanding Local Law 97

Understanding Local Law 97

There is growing pressure on cities worldwide to reduce carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions to protect the environment as the average global temperature rises and weather conditions become extreme. To reduce carbon emissions and safeguard the environment, New York City passed the Climate Mobilization Act, which includes various legislation geared towards reducing emissions and improving energy efficiency.

Local Law 97 is part of the Climate Mobilization Act and aims to reduce the emissions of certain buildings across the city. The goal of the law is to cut emissions in the city by 80% by 2050. Buildings meeting the requirements of the law will need to find ways to improve their energy efficiency to lower their carbon emissions. Effective pipe insulation can aid Local Law 97 compliance by reducing energy use.

What Is Local Law 97?

Local Law 97 (LL97) is an initiative by New York City that seeks to reduce the carbon emissions in the city. The initiative was passed into law in April 2019 as part of the Climate Mobilization Act. LL97 aims to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from certain buildings as part of a strategy to reduce the carbon emissions in the city by 40% by 2030 and eventually by 80% by 2050. The law set out limits for carbon emissions by buildings over 25,000 square feet.

New York City emits roughly 233.5 million tons of carbon annually, making them one of the largest contributors to carbon emissions across the U.S. and the world. Buildings account for nearly 71% of these emissions due to energy consumption from various facilities, including heating, cooling, and lighting systems. LL97 aims to reduce these emissions by setting standards for carbon emissions in large buildings.

Many building owners and managers will need to find ways to reduce carbon emissions by retrofitting or upgrading various systems and using cleaner energy sources.

Requirements for LL97

LL 97 will affect mainly large buildings or buildings with a combined size that exceeds the set requirements. The law affects the following:

  • Any building more than 25,000 square feet
  • Two or more buildings on one tax lot that are more than 50,000 square feet when combined
  • Two or more buildings owned by the same association and with the same governing board with a combined size larger than 50,000 square feet

The law covers nearly 40,000 buildings in New York City, over 60% of the city’s building area. The carbon limits will vary for different property types based on Energy Star Portfolio Manager (ESPM) property types and how much greenhouse gas per square foot the building emits. Mixed-use buildings will need to adhere to the respective limits based.

There are four main compliance periods, each with fines attributed, for buildings that meet the above requirements. The first set of carbon limits and accompanying fines come into effect in 2024, at the start of the first compliance period. This period will end in 2029. The first compliance period is aimed at the top 20% of carbon emitters, meaning many buildings may still fall within the carbon limits without making too many changes.

The limits in the second compliance period will be far stricter and are aimed at 75% of emitters. The second period will last from 2030 to 2034. The third compliance phase will run from 2035 to 2039 and phase four from 2040 to 2049, with emissions limits falling to cover all buildings that meet the requirements. Reports on building emissions and compliance will be required annually from 1 May 2025. Fines and penalties will be issued shortly after the first reports.

Complying With LL97

Non-compliance with LL97 can lead to hefty fines. Buildings that don’t comply with the carbon caps will be fined $268 per metric ton of carbon emitted over the carbon cap. These fines can rack up quickly when buildings can go hundreds or even thousands of metric tons over carbon limits.

There are a few ways buildings can meet the carbon limits set out by LL97:

  1. Using alternative energy sources, including hydroelectricity, solar, wind, and geothermal power
  2. Upgrading, retrofitting, and replacing systems to improve energy efficiency
  3. Buying renewable energy credits to cover part or all of your carbon emissions

With the first set of carbon limits set to come into effect shortly, you may need to consider a combination of methods to meet the requirements of the first phase. However, a long-term strategy would be ideal for reducing carbon emissions over time as each phase is enforced. Even simple adjustments such as weatherizing buildings, adding insulation to pipes and tanks, repairing leaks, upgrading lighting, and adding timers to specific systems can significantly impact your building’s energy efficiency.

 LL97 LinkedIn    Calculate my buildings emissions + potential fines

Benefits of Being LL97 Compliant

The main focus of LL97 is lower greenhouse gas emissions through effective energy management. Investing significant time and resources into upgrading or retrofitting existing systems to improve energy use and reduce emissions has several benefits beyond avoiding the fines and penalties for non-compliance. Some of the benefits of being LL97 compliant include the following:

  • Reduced operating costs: Improving the various systems in your buildings to be more energy efficient can help them operate more effectively, which may lower your operating costs. Investing in new equipment and machinery can reduce breakdowns, costly repairs, and extensive maintenance that can quickly increase operating costs.
  • Long-term energy savings: Implementing energy efficiency measures can significantly reduce energy usage and bills. The money saved on energy can be redirected to other areas of your business or building management.
  • Improved tenant satisfaction: Being LL97 compliant can also improve tenant satisfaction, as more efficient building management can improve tenant comfort. Reduced energy and operating costs may help keep rental prices more affordable, lowering tenant turnover. With a growing focus on being environmentally conscious, some tenants may also appreciate that they live and work in buildings that are LL97 compliant.
  • Increased building value: Any new equipment, retrofits, and other upgrades can improve the value of your property. Buildings that meet or exceed the carbon limits will become more desirable.
  • Lower carbon emissions: The main benefit of being LL97 compliant is having lower greenhouse gas emissions and a smaller carbon footprint. Reducing your carbon footprint can help contribute to a cleaner environment and community.

Improve Energy Efficiency With Thermaxx Insulation Solutions


With the first compliance period for LL97 fast approaching, there is no time to delay ensuring your building is compliant. Thermaxx insulation blankets and solutions can help you manage the energy use of essential systems in your building. Insulation ensures systems lose less heat, lowering the energy needed to heat or maintain temperatures.

Weathermaxx Covers can help weatherize your systems by protecting and insulating outdoor equipment and components. Thermaxx insulation jackets ensure your pipes and valves retain heat, lowering operating costs. Contact our team today to learn how our insulation solutions can improve your building’s energy efficiency.

Exceptions to LL97

Certain buildings are exceptions to LL97 and have alternative ways to meet compliance. These buildings must commit to reducing their carbon emissions rather than meeting the carbon caps. Some of the building types exempt from the carbon limits include:

  • Places of worship
  • Non-profit health care facilities, including hospitals
  • Government buildings owned by the city
  • Industrial facilities that generate electric power or steam
  • Buildings with more than 35% rent-regulated dwellings
  • Accommodation that is part of a federal housing program
  • Housing owned or on land owned by the New York Housing Authority

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This case study was written by Jack McTigue, an insulation expert at Thermaxx Jackets Alex Birmelin of Bettina Equities asked Thermaxx Jackets
About The Legislation On April 18, 2019 the New York City Council passed wide-ranging legislation known as the "Climate Mobilization
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