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Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

Printable Version
City of Berkeley - Energy Conservation Ordinance   

Last DSIRE Review: 05/18/2012
Program Overview:
State: California
Incentive Type: Building Energy Code
Eligible Efficiency Technologies: Equipment Insulation, Lighting, Caulking/Weather-stripping, Duct/Air sealing, Building Insulation, Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Residential, Multi-Family Residential
Web Site:
Authority 1:
Berkeley Municipal Code 19.72
Authority 2:
Berkeley Municipal Code 19.16
Authority 3:
CECO Self-Audit Guide
Authority 4:
RECO Compliance Guide
The City of Berkeley has an ordinance requiring certain energy conservation measures to be installed in residential and commercial properties upon the sale of the building or major renovations over $50,000 in valuation.

The Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance (RECO) requires the ceiling insulation to be R-30, sealed and insulated furnace ducts, insulated water heaters and hot water pipes, weatherstripping around all exterior doors, improved the lighting efficiency, and improved water efficiency. These measures must be installed by the seller at the time of sale, and the seller and/or licensed real estate agent or broker handling the sale is responsible for compliance with this code. The maximum required expenditure to bring a residential structure into compliance is three-quarters of one percent of the final sale price for a structure not containing more than two units. The maximum expenditure for structures containing three units or more is fifty cents per square foot. The maximum expenditure in the case of renovation of fifty thousand dollars or more is one percent of the renovation costs. Any required measures not installed as a result of the spending cap must be installed during future sales or renovations to the property until all measures have been installed.

The Commercial Energy Conservation Ordinance (CECO) requires commercial property owners selling or renovating their property to install a variety of energy conservation measures for HVAC equipment, water systems, lighting, commercial refrigeration equipment, motor-driven equipment and the building envelope. The maximum total cost of the energy conservation measures to be installed upon sale of a commercial building is the lesser of one percent of the assessed value prior to sale or one hundred fifty thousand dollars. Upon subsequent sales of the building, any remaining energy conservation measures shall be installed subject again to the expenditure limit. The maximum cost for measures installed upon a major renovation is the lesser of five percent of the total construction cost or one percent of the assessed value of the entire building prior to the renovation.

  Public Information Officer
City of Berkeley
Planning Department
2120 Milvia Street
Berkeley, CA 94704
Phone: (510) 981-7762
Web Site:
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Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.