New York Adopts Nation Leading Energy Goals


New York State Governor Kathy Hochul signed the nation-leading Executive Order 22 (EO22)to accelerate and streamline New York State’s efforts to make its operations more sustainable. EO22 streamlines the State’s sustainability and climate objectives and sets new goals for the environmental performance of State agencies and aligns with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (2019). The electric grid has committed to 100% renewable energy by 2040.

Key goals include:

EO22 includes the following targets and goals for the built environment:

  • 100% of the electricity used in State operations will come from renewable energy by 2030.
  • 11 trillion BTUs of energy savings will be achieved by 2025 through the BuildSmart 2025 program.
  • Restricting new State facilities that enter design and permitting starting in 2024 from using infrastructure that can be used for the combustion of fossil fuels.
  • Climate resiliency at State facilities will be increased.

EO22 established the GreenNY Council to be responsible for implementing this Order. The Council will be led by the Commissioners of the Office of General Services, Department of Environmental Conservation, and Department of Budget, as well as the Presidents of NYSERDA and NYPA or their designees. Each agency or authority affected by this Order will establish a Sustainability Team and will provide the Team with the resources to implement and comply with EO22.

“I see EO22 as a comprehensive approach to previous legislation and Executive Orders developed to address climate change. It is a way for state owned entities to approach an action plan that meets NYS’s CLCPA. It includes aggressive carbon neutral goals for new buildings, green vehicles and embodied carbon for building materials,” explains Jaimee Wilson, PhD, PE, LEED AP, BEAP, BEMP. Dr. Wilson is a Principal at Pathfinder Engineers & Architects and leads the firm’s Energy Group.

The A/E/C community can embrace this order to plan how State Agencies can connect to a cleaner grid for their buildings, their vehicles and for materials selection for facilities design.

In relation to existing buildings, rather than new construction, state agencies must achieve a reduction of 11 trillion BTUs by 2025. Prior to 2030 a new goal will be established. “It will be incumbent that state agencies coordinate their efforts to achieve these goals as facilities continue to meet their mission critical programs,” adds Dr. Wilson.

“Higher education campuses, agencies and authorities have been early adopters to meet New York’s nation-leading climate goals. Now this discussion is part of design decisions for every NYS design project whether a renovation or new building. As we incorporate these goals it impacts every one from the designer, to the owner to the contractor and to the end user,” says Dr. Wilson.

“I am excited to see New York State move in the direction of decarbonization and electrification. Pathfinder is helping multiple state-owned buildings -- including SUNY campuses--  with their Clean Energy Master Plans,” says Joe Maioli, CPHC, LEED AP, an Energy Engineer at Pathfinder. “Ultimately, we are helping building owners, operators, and leadership understand the advantages and disadvantages of achieving these mandates. There is large potential for energy and carbon reduction in our state-owned buildings that ultimately save time and money in the long run. Plus, the mandates help ensure that buildings are resilient and that people are safe during challenging times. It is the right thing to do.”

Link to the full Executive Order 22: