Building Energy Codes for a Carbon Constrained Era: A Toolkit of Strategies and Examples

Building energy codes – as well as related training and support – are critical tools to achieving carbon and energy reductions as they drive higher performance building practices throughout the construction industry, influencing and ultimately defining standard practice.

  • Buildings consume about two-thirds of the United States’ power supply and produce about 40 percent of carbon emissions

  • States and communities in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region are adopting goals to aggressively cut carbon emissions and energy use between the years 2020 to 2050

Carbon Dioxide Emission Levels 180-2014 (in MMT CO2)

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont
  • Washington D.C.

Critical Objectives


building energy code development and adoption to enact zero energy buildings codes within
the next 15 to 25 years


the administration of building energy codes to ensure that desired performance levels are

Regional Commitments to carbon reduction in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic
Overall, the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region continues to serve as a national leader in energy codes adoption. However, there are opportunities to improve the efficiency of the energy code in every state. As of January 2017, each state in the region employs a version of one of the last three national model energy codes; the 2009, 2012, and 2015 IECC for residential buildings and ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007, -2010, and -2013 for commercial buildings.
Based on current and projected efficiency and construction trends and analysis by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Pacific Northwest National Labs (PNNL), NEEP supports the following goals for the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region:
Building Energy Codes for a Carbon Constrained Era: A Toolkit of Strategies and Examples

NEEP was founded more than 20 years ago as a non-profit to accelerate energy efficiency in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states. Today, it is one of six Regional Energy Efficiency Organizations (REEOs) funded, in part by the U.S. Department of Energy to support state efficiency policies and programs. Our long-term shared goal is to assist the region to reduce carbon emissions 80% by 2050.  For more about our 2017 strategies and projects, see this 2-page overview or these project briefs. You can also watch this brief video regarding our history.

Disclaimer: NEEP verified the data used for this white paper to the best of our ability. This paper reflects the opinion and judgments of the NEEP staff and does not necessarily reflect those of NEEP Board members, NEEP Sponsors, or project participants and funders.