ENERGY REACH CODE REQUIREMENTS FOR NEW CONSTRUCTION  

 

NOTE FOR BUILDING PERMIT APPLICANTS: 
New State and local standards regarding energy and green building went into place on January 1, 2020. Please make sure you are referencing the correct standards. 

It is important for project owners, architects, engineers, and designers to understand the applicable state and local energy and green building requirements prior to project design. A Certified Energy Analyst (CEA) is a critical member of your project team to include early in the process.  Early consideration of these standards allows for design of buildings and systems that are compliant, energy efficient, and cost effective, and minimizes back and forth when applying for the project permit.  

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Current Requirements for New Construction 

Santa Monica's local Energy Code requires that all new construction projects have a Certified Energy Analyst (CEA) prepare and sign the Title 24 Certificate of Compliance.   

New buildings in Santa Monica have two pathways for complying with the Energy Code: all-electric or mixed-fuel.  All-electric buildings powered by a combination of on-site solar and 100% Green Power from the Clean Power Alliance are effectively zero-emission buildings - they are healthier, safer and less expensive to build.   

 
Residential buildings three stories or less, including Single-Family Homes, Multifamily, and ADUs: 

All-Electric Building, which includes: 

  • All-electric end uses
  • No natural gas or propane appliances
  • No gas meters or propane infrastructure
  • Compliance with the energy efficiency standards required by the State (no additional local energy efficiency requirements)

Mixed-Fuel Building, which includes:

  • Natural gas and electric allowed for all appliances
  • Meeting standards for mixed-fuel designs as specified for CalGreen Tier 1 under the 2019 Califrornia Green Building Standards Code, Title 24, Part 11, Appendix A4 Residential Voluntary Measures Division A4.203-Performance Approach for Newly Constructed Buildings. Project must achieve a Total EDR of 10 or less

 

High-rise Residential, Non-Residential, and Hotels/Motels: 

Solar Photovoltaic Requirement:  minimum rating of 2 watts per square foot of the building footprint.  

All-Electric Building, which includes: 

  •  All-electric end uses
  • No natural gas or propane appliances
  • No gas meters or propane infrastructure
  • Compliance with the energy efficiency standards required by the State (no additional local energy efficiency requirements)

Mixed-Fuel Building, which includes:

  • Natural gas and electric allowed for all appliances
  • High-rise residential and hotel/motel buildings must have a 5% compliance margin as demonstrated on the Title 24 Certificate of Compliance
  • Non-residential buildings must have a 10% compliance margin as demonstrated on the Title 24 Certificate of Compliance

 

Current Requirements for Major Additions

Major additions, including the addition of a new story or adding a cumulative of 50% or more of existing floor area must install on-site solar photovoltaics (Santa Monica Municipal Code 8.106, Green Building Standards Code): 

  • One- and Two-family Dawllings: shall include a solar photovoltaic system with a minimum total wattage of 1.5 times the square footage of the addition's footprint
  • Multi-family and Nonresidential buildings: shall include a solar photovoltaic system with a minimum total wattage of 2 times the square footage of the addition's footprint