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Boulder Targets Reduction of Emission with Simpler Rules

Boulder hopes to be stricter on emissions with the new and city-specific energy code. It also aims for customers to use easier.

The city council approved the new program called the City of Boulder Energy Conservation Code in a unanimous vote.

One million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions in Boulder are expected to be reduced by 2031 through this move.

The officials are hoping to have net-zero energy codes for all buildings in the city on that year.

Aside from this move, the city aims an 80-percent cut in greenhouse emissions by 2050. The newly approved building code is expected to help reduction of this about one-eighth of the way toward the 2050 goal.

New commercial and residential buildings will be required to have electric vehicle charging infrastructure and these should be solar ready, for possible installation of photo-voltaic systems.

New homes larger than 5,000 square feet will be required to have a net energy consumption of zero. They need to have renewable energy on-site for their consumption.

Less stringent rules will be applied to smaller homes, but the city aims to extend the net-zero requirements to a wider set of properties over time.

Those who plan on having renovations or additions to their homes will be subjected to enforcement of stricter benchmarks.

A stand-alone city code will make compliance simpler and easier according to the city staff.

Currently, customers refer to amendments in the Boulder Revised Code then find those amended sections in the international code.

There has been confusion over these requirements.

“We’re simplifying the regulations even as we’re raising the bar,” Mayor Suzanne Jones said.

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