Sustainable Buildings Local Law 97 To Affect Brooklyn Buildings In 2024

If your local Brooklyn apartment has not been making sustainability efforts, it’s time to call your landlord and building owners. Local law 97 (LL97), part of the city’s Climate Mobilization Act in 2019, states that buildings 25,000 square feet and larger must limit harmful energy emissions. 

Buildings across NYC will need to comply with the law by 2024 or face fines of $268 for every metric ton of carbon dioxide above the building’s limit. Following in 2030, even stricter limits will come into effect. 

REBNY (Real Estate Board of New York) warned that over 3,000 buildings could face over $200 million per year in fines next year after commissioning a study from Level Infrastructure. The study focused on the impact of recently finalized rules to implement LL97. 

Zachary Steinberg, REBNY’s vice president of policy, stated, “The study’s findings demonstrate that even if buildings take meaningful steps to comply and use the tools provided by the law, owners will still be unable to meet the emissions limits and will instead pay hundreds of millions of dollars in annual penalties. We hope the city will take action over the next 12 months to avoid damage to our local economy and unfair penalties to property owners in 2024.”

What Actions Can The City Take To Improve LL97?

REBNY provided testimony, in November of 2022, to the city detailing its issues with the proposed rules for reporting on and complying with annual greenhouse gas emissions.

In general, the solutions REBNY wants the city to implement are:

  • A tax abatement program for greenhouse gas emissions, similar to a bill recently introduced in the New York State Senate
  • Additional incentive programs to offset the costs of increasing energy efficiency and electrification
  • Earmark penalty funds for specific purposes related to sustainability or allow owners to make alternative compliance payments to improve the performance of buildings with below-market-rate units.
  • Avoid further restrictions on the use of renewable energy credits

Why Should Tenants Take Action When It Comes To Local Law 97?

Resident buildings are the most impacted when the law comes into play. Rental, co-ops, and condo buildings need more resources to fund and coordinate compliance fully, REBNY argues. Sixty percent of the buildings out of compliance are projected to be residential, rising to 66 percent by 2030. 

To get ahead, one recommendation is for buildings to undertake a reserve study or an energy audit. Generally, building a reserve fund to address capital improvements is recommended. This could mean an increase in price for residents. 

What resources are available for Building Owners for LL97?

Building owners can get help via the city-sponsored NYC Accelerator. They provide free technical assistance to help owners comply with LL97. Once there, owners can be connected with service providers, incentives, and information on financing.

Additionally, the Accelerator offers tools to track your building’s energy use and LL97 compliance status, information on local contractors and design professionals, and one-on-one guidance.

If you’re still looking for some guidance, get in touch and we can talk it through with you!


If you’re interested in learning about buying or selling in Brooklyn, download our free Buying Into Brooklyn Ebook or our Seller’s Guide. We share a ton of valuable resources to demystify the buying and selling process.

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