The Ithaca Green Building Policy is studying energy use and water use standards in new construction, and the policy tools that could be used to implement the standards through mandates and/or incentives.

Ithaca has a strong history of sustainability efforts. The Comprehensive Plans of the Town of Ithaca and the City of Ithaca feature Sustainability and Equity as thread-through themes. These plans state the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050. 

Energy use in buildings, responsible for nearly three quarters of the City’s carbon footprint, is a crucial sector to address. The City and the Town have already taken important steps to address energy use in existing buildings, such as establishing a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing service, co-founding the innovative Residential Energy Score project, and signing on as an inaugural member of the Ithaca 2030 District. However, given the building boom that Ithaca is experiencing, now is a crucial time to address the energy efficiency of new construction.

This project will culminate in spring 2018 with a set of recommendations for standards and policies that the City and the Town could use to improve the efficiency of new construction and meet their ambitious GHG emission reduction goals.


Project goals/purpose

  1. Lay the groundwork for increasing energy efficient development by gaining an understanding of the energy standards and policy tools available to and appropriate for Ithaca
  2. Understand the potential positive and negative social impacts of a green building policy
  3. Advance greenhouse gas reduction efforts in the community
  4. Lay the groundwork for reducing energy costs and improving public health
  5. Increase the diversity of active participants in Ithaca sustainability efforts
  6. Assess and build support for mandated and/or incentivized energy standards for new construction