QR Code

Equitable, Carbon-Free Hot Water in NYC

What is this project?

Urban Green Council is working to replace fossil fuel hot water heaters with clean, healthy, highly efficient heat pump water heaters. We’re focused on bringing this technology to old walk-up apartment buildings in NYC. With the help of RiseBoro Community Partnership and Con Edison, the first upgrades will occur in several buildings in Bushwick, with the goal of expanding to other buildings in similar areas across the city.

An electric heat pump water heater pulls heat from the air and transfers it to water enclosed in a tank. They are:

  • Clean and healthy: Replacing fossil fuel equipment = less pollution and a healthier local environment
  • Highly efficient: 2-3x more efficient than gas or oil water heaters
  • Designed for NYC’s cold winters: Many products have been installed and tested in some of the coldest places in the U.S. and Canada

Investing in building upgrades in disadvantaged communities is a priority of the federal government’s Justice 40 Initiative. Green areas on the map represent city blocks in Justice 40 priority areas that contain many walk-up apartment buildings in need of water heater upgrades.

Our team

Urban Green is a nonprofit based in NYC dedicated to decarbonizing buildings for healthy and resilient communities. For this project, we’re teaming up with Riseboro and Con Edison, who will help us engage the community and address technical barriers to installation.

Urban Green Council logo

About the Buildings UP prize

Buildings UP is a U.S. Department of Energy prize to accelerate equitable, widespread and efficient electrification building upgrades across the country. Projects like this one will reduce carbon emissions and improve tenant comfort and health.


Email research@urbangreencouncil.org