Just hours before the start of the People’s Climate March on Sunday, and two days ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new plan for city buildings aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions by over 80 percent by 2050.
The plan, called “One City, Built to Last,” will upgrade some 3,000 buildings with high energy use over the next 10 years, which include public housing, hospitals, homeless shelters and schools, according to the mayor’s office. The plan also includes incentives for private building owners to lower emissions, and mandates if reductions are not met. Between 150 and 200 buildings will receive improvements each year for the next decade, and all city buildings will be upgraded by 2025.
“Climate change is an existential threat to New Yorkers and our planet. Acting now is nothing short of a moral imperative,” de Blasio said Sunday. “New York City must continue to set the pace and provide the bold leadership that’s needed — and becoming the world’s largest city to commit to an 80 percent reduction in emissions by 2050 is central to that commitment.”
The mayor’s office estimates a $8.5 billion in energy savings over 10 years, and the creation of 3,500 new construction and energy jobs.
The initiative is supported by United States Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, the mayor’s office said.