State Issues Recommendations for Electrifying Buildings

Content presented by NAIOP Maryland

After some delay, the Maryland Codes Administration (MCA) has issued a report on the technologies, timing, and policies necessary to electrify the building sector.

Contrary to the Maryland Department of the Environment’s Building Energy Performance Standard, which would mandate an abrupt and arbitrary energy transition, the MCA’s report sets out a pragmatic, orderly switch to electricity, implemented through the international building and energy codes.

The report’s recommendations include:

  • Phase-in an all-electric building code beginning with commercial and residential buildings smaller than 5,000 square feet.
  • Allow time for innovation in technologies and construction methods related to larger buildings.
  • Adopt an “all options on the table mindset” that includes biofuels and hybrid systems while technologies advance.
  • Do not require existing buildings to fully electrify before sufficient utility grid capacity and power generation are in place.

The full report by the Maryland Codes Administration can be found here.

The MCA report was conducted as part of the implementation of the landmark Climate Solutions Now Act. That legislation established the state’s near- and long-term goals for greenhouse gas reduction and mandated dozens of studies on how to reach those goals.