Local law 88 was enacted in December 2009 as part of the Greener Greater Buildings Plan. It requires upgrades to lighting systems and the installation of sub-meters by January 1, 2025.
New York City’s council found that non-residential lighting is responsible for almost 18% of the energy used in buildings and roughly 18% of carbon emissions from buildings. Due to rapid improvements in lighting technology—like LEDs, occupancy sensors, and controls—it is possible to dramatically reduce energy use and costs by upgrading your lighting to a modern system.
New York City has set a lot of big goals for reducing carbon emissions. Local laws like LL88 act as a catalyst for building owners and managers to meet these goals by identifying areas of improvement and outlining paths to implement those improvements.
You are not responsible if you are: a tenant, a resident, a leaser.
You are responsible if you are: a building or property owner, or co-op/condo association.
To make it easy, if you had to comply with local law 87 (which requires that buildings over 50,000 gross square feet undergo periodic energy audit and retro-commissioning measures), you’ll also have to comply with local law 88. If you’re not sure, keep reading to find out if your building is included in the covered buildings.
(The city also released a list of covered buildings in 2019 that you can download as an excel file here. Buildings are listed by their Borough-Block-Lot (BBL) number. Or, get in touch with us—we’ll let you know if your building has to comply.)
Here are some general guidelines to help you determine if your building is included.You need to comply:
You do not need to comply:
There’s a good chance that some of the lighting in your building already complies with LL88 lighting requirements from changes made during lease turnovers or renovations. But it’s important to track what lighting is already up to code and what areas still need upgrades.
Covered buildings must demonstrate that the lighting in their building complies with the energy code in place after July 1, 2010. The most recent energy conservation code is from 2016.
There are essentially two parts to energy code lighting standards: energy density, or how much power is used in a given area (measured in watts of lighting per square foot) and lighting upgrades, meaning sensors, timers, control switches, etc.
There are exceptions to every rule and exceptions to every exception. The energy conservation code is no different.
For example, if the space is in a healthcare facility where patient care is directly provided, a dwelling or sleeping unit, or where lighting is required to have a specific application control (such as display or accent lighting in a retail space), daylight responsive controls are not required.
The code is dense and can get complicated. Let us help you find your way! Get in touch with one of Wavelength's LL88 experts today.