Energy efficient properties will reduce emissions by 2030
Author: Ashley Collins
The CEC recently released its California Building Decarbonization Assessment to ensure the state reduces at least 40% below 1990 levels of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissionsin existing and future residential and commercial buildings by 2030, as directed by Assembly Bill (AB) 3232. To reduce emissions statewide, the CEC recommends builders and owners: replace gas appliances with electric appliances, decarbonize electricity by increasing the low-carbon share of the generation portfolio, foster energy efficiency, use more efficient refrigerants to reduce leakage, increase energy resources, such as onsite battery storage, replace appliances using natural gas with appliances reliant on renewable gases and be incentivized to shift their energy use. Though the recommendations suggested by the CEC are not mandated, the California Building Decarbonization Assessment is meant to direct property owners on how to reduce their carbon footprint along with energy costs. The assessment builds upon the CEC’s 2020 energy building standards which require residential homes and multi-family buildings of three stories or less to: install smart solar systems on rooftops, install smart battery storage and heat pump systems that allow the home to store energy produced during off-peak periods, improve indoor air quality with high-efficiency air filters and tighten building envelopes, including stronger insulation in attics, walls and windows.