Local Law 88 requires NYC property owners to upgrade their lighting systems and install tenant sub-meters. A package of laws known as the Greener Greater Buildings Plan encompasses Local Law 88. The NYC Government enacted these laws in December 2009 to improve the energy and water efficiency of New York City’s largest existing buildings. This article will focus only on Tenant Sub-Metering.
LL88 requires Buildings sub-meter floors occupying 5,000 Gross Square Feet or more. Tenants less than 5,000 Gross Square feet may be able to share a sub-meter with other tenants on that floor. By January 1, 2025, buildings must file a report with the NYC DOB. A registered design professional or a master electrician must certify the report. The DOB has not offered any guidance on the report format. However we recommend the Landlord keep a list of tenants and their dedicated or shared sub-meters on file.
LL88 requires that the Landlord share the electric usage with the Tenants on a monthly basis. The landlord need not use the reports to collect funds from the Tenant. However the monthly report must show how much energy the Tenant or the group of Tenants represented by the sub-meter consumed.
We recommended the use of a real-time metering system vs. a manual read one. A manual system requires that a person walkthrough and read the meters each month. This method has proven to be error prone and may not allow for timely monthly reports sent to the Tenants. A real-time metering system is not much more expensive and will provide automatic meter reading and timely reports to the Tenants. The building will not have to schedule resources to accompany a meter reader around the building. Real-time metering systems also are not as error prone and manually-read ones.
LC Associates has several wireless sub-metering systems in NYC where we provide monthly reporting and billing for Landlords. We used our GreenConnect system which streamlines meter reading and data analystics.
We also recommend using electronic sub-metering systems that can be easily installed and maintained by your in-house personnel if possible. From our experience, metering systems require maintenance that could otherwise be performed using in-house personnel. One feature that landlords should consider is the use of safe CT’s and PT’s.
Current Transducers, sometimes referred to as “safe CT’s”, are used to measure large currents in electric systems sometimes up to 480VAC, in commercial buildings. Unlike split-core transformers which have dangerous voltages on their secondary loops, Current Transducers have internal circuitary that convert dangerous secondary currents to millivolt signals. Most commonly, the secondary output is a 333mV AC or DC signal that is proportional to the larger electrical current flow.
Split-core current transformers on the other hand, can be quite dangerous. The large current induces a magnetic field that generates a smaller current in the secondary windings. This secondary current must be fed into a short circuit, a control system or an amp meter/recorder. Installing Current Transformers with an open circuit on the secondary could also lead to violent damage.
Nothing pleased your Tenants more than feature-rich reporting. Our GreenConnect system will generate business analytics for the Landlord, while sending Tenants feature-rich reporting which can include billing or usage information.
Tenants will respond to information, especially if it can showcase their commitment to Energy Sustainability and Governance (ESG).
GreenConnect tenant reports can be customized to include greenhouse gas emissions reduced, and equivalent offsets such as trees planted, cars removed, etc.
Landlords will also be able to identify opportunities at the Tenant level for complying with Local Law 97.