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If a recently introduced bill passes the state legislature, it will be lights out for gas in New York State.
The “All-Electric Building Act” was introduced by State Senator Brian Kavanagh and Assemblywoman Emily Gallagher of Brooklyn.
The bill would prohibit municipalities throughout the state from issuing any new permits for the construction of as-powered buildings after 2023 or conversions of existing buildings after 2022, with some exceptions if there are no feasible alternatives for a particular project.
“If we are serious about reducing the harmful effects of climate change, then we must take aggressive action to decrease greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution in all sectors of our society and economy, including construction projects,” said Kavanagh.
The bill calls for buildings to be “all-electric ready” during construction, meaning that all utilities can be functional without natural gas or propane.
Buildings account for 28 percent of the country’s energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, the only other city in the U.S. with a similar law is Berkeley, California, which banned new natural gas hookups in 2020.
Even without the statewide bill, a number of buildings in New York City have opted to go the all-electric route. Construction began in July on 80 Flatbush, the first all-electric residential building in New York City.
The project is expected to be completed in 2024, and is part of a larger mixed-used development on the border of Boerum Hill and Downtown Brooklyn. Alloy Development claimed the building will be carbon-neutral, the first of its kind in the five boroughs.
“We are committed to making Brooklyn beautiful, sustainable and equitable and as the city recovers from the pandemic,” said Alloy founder and CEO Jared Della Valle. “We hope the Alloy Block will set the standard for progressive, thoughtful development.”