In late 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio proposed expanding the scope of New York City’s hallmark building energy disclosure law, Local Law 84, to cover midsized buildings. The proposed expansion could prove critical to the City’s pollution-reduction goals. Yet, without also addressing the means by which energy information is communicated, Mayor de Blasio’s proposal is likely to leave considerable energy savings on the table. At present, Local Law 84 does not require property owners to ensure that prospective tenants or buyers are at any point presented with the information collected. As a result, there is no guarantee that this information will be given an opportunity to influence consumers’ decisions.
In this policy brief, Danielle Spiegel-Feld provides an overview of the European Union’s energy disclosure laws, which offer an example of a regime that seeks to ensure consumers view energy performance data prior to deciding to buy or lease, and presents the case for adopting similar requirements here.