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electrification of new construction 

Sacramento City Council first adopted the New Building Electrification Ordinance on June 1, 2021. Building electrification is a key strategy to reduce Sacramento's greenhouse gas emissions.  This ordinance leverages SB100, which mandates that electric utilities in California provide carbon neutral electricity by 2045 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution from burning fossil fuels in vehicles and inside buildings.

The New Building Electrification Ordinance amended Title 15 of Sacramento City Code making local amendments to the California Building Standards Code requiring:

  • Building permit applications filed on or after January 1, 2023, for newly constructed buildings that are three stories or less to be all-electric buildings.
  • Building permit applications filed on or after January 1, 2026, for newly constructed buildings that are four stories or more to be all-electric buildings.

An updated Ordinance that was mostly technical in nature was adopted by City Council on November 29, 2022, to align the New Building Electrification Ordinance with the 2022 California Building Code.

Limited Exemptions - The New Building Electrification Ordinance provides the following limited exemptions to electrification requirements for building permit applications filed on or before December 31, 2025:

  • Ground floor food establishment for the area of the building with cooking equipment.  The building official shall grant the exemption only for fuel gas piping, fixtures, or infrastructure necessary for cooking equipment within the designated food service area.
  • Manufacturing or industrial facilities for the area of the building with process loads.  The building official shall grant this exemption only for the area of the building with process loads.
  • Water-heating systems and equipment in regulated affordable housing for those portions of the building where virtual net energy metering is unavailable.

Infeasibility Waiver Process:  To provide additional flexibility for new construction that codified exemptions cannot provide, the New Building Electrification Ordinance provides for an infeasibility waiver process that will allow the Building Official to waive all-electric requirements for the portions of the project where all-electric is demonstrated by the project applicant to be infeasible.  On November 29, 2022, City Council adopted an Infeasibility Waiver Guidance Document, which outlines the process and criteria for infeasibility waivers.

Infeasibility Waiver Guidance Document - Technical Panel

As part of the preparation for implementing the New Building Electrification Ordinance, city staff convened an advisory technical panel tasked with vetting barriers where technologies are not yet market-ready for electrification and providing input on guidelines for infeasibility waivers. The 14 members of the technical panel were selected to represent stakeholder groups approved by City Council on June 1, 2021.  The Infeasibility Waiver Guidance Document was reviewed by the Law and Legislation Committee on September 20 and will go before City Council on November 29.

Upcoming Events

City Council Hearing, November 29, 2022:  Adoption of the New Building Electrification Ordinance, updated to align with the 2022 California Building Standards Code; adoption of guidelines and fees for infeasibility waivers

Topic-Based Webinar Series on Building Electrification

As part of an extensive community engagement process, the City hosted a series of topic-based events/webinars on building electrification. The purpose of the series was educational, but also provided a forum for city staff to receive input from the community and stakeholders with subject-matter experts present.   

Documents:

Staff Reports:

Cost Effectiveness Studies:  https://localenergycodes.com/content/resources

Other Resources:

A Business Guide to Beneficial Electrification

Link to Existing Building Electrification webpage

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