New York to ban inefficient all-glass buildings

New York City aims to reduce its emissions by nearly 30 per cent by 2030. One way it plans to achieve this is by banning inefficient all-glass buildings that waste energy.

In a global first, New York City plans to require all large existing buildings of around 2,300 square metres to drastically reduce their energy usage and emissions. This will affect some 50,000 buildings citywide, according to a press release from the mayor’s office.

In addition, new glass-walled buildings will be banned unless they meet strict performance guidelines for energy efficiency, making “inefficient glass-heavy building designs a thing of the past”.

The measures are part of the city’s Green New Deal, which will see the city reduce its emissions by 28 per cent by 2030. Buildings reportedly account for more than two-thirds of emissions in New York City.

The city also plans to have its entire municipal operations powered with renewable sources of electricity within five years, which will include building a new connection linking New York City to Canadian hydropower. It also announced that it will improve public transport and reclaim city streets by restricting traffic, beginning first with a zone in Lower Manhattan. Organic waste, which emits methane, will soon be subject to mandatory recycling.

“Every day we wait is a day our planet gets closer to the point of no-return,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “New York City’s Green New Deal meets that reality head on.”

Columbia University professor of economist Jeffry Sachs called New York City’s New Green Deal “a breakthrough of historic proportions”, adding that it will put the city “in the global forefront of the 21st century.

Image credit: ben o’bro via Unsplash

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