Mayor Michael Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn announced last week 25 percent of the proposed green building laws have been drafted into law over the last two years. The proposals were part of a green building report originally published by the Urban Green Council. Of the 111 recommendations in the report, 29 of them have been drafted into law, with an additional eight recommendations currently being codified. The new laws will reduce greenhouse emissions by 5 percent citywide, saving the city $400 million by 2030.
The passing of green legislation marks an important milestone in Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC sustainability initiative. “When we launched PlaNYC five years ago, we put forward a bold vision to make our City more sustainable, and meeting those goals is now a part of how our city develops,” the Mayor said.
Some of the recommendations include using natural light instead of artificial light when possible, installing water fountains instead of vending machines, and painting the roofs white to cool the buildings down. The city is also working on restructuring bureaucratic restrictions that hamper green design initiatives.
“These simple changes are just the beginning of making our buildings more environmentally friendly and making New York one of the world’s greenest cities,” said Buildings Commissioner Robert LiMandri. The city is also working on other initiatives such as diverting 100,000 tons of asphalt from landfills annually and lowering daily water consumption by the equivalent of 61 Central Park Reservoirs.