||New York’s Upper West Side Side composes of hundreds of housing cooperative (co-op)
apartment buildings using No. 6 oil as their primary heating fuel. The use of No.
6 oil in less than 1% of the building stock citywide provided 86% of heating fuel
related soot emissions for all of New York City. As a result, New York implemented
a ban on No. 6 oil effective in 2015. Additionally, since a majority of these co-ops
were built before World War II, these co-ops provide an opportunity to implement energy
efficiency upgrades that reduce operating costs while improving air quality and reducing
Our analysis features a financial and emissions inventory model for switching from
No. 6 oil to cleaner fuels. The volatility of fuel and natural gas prices plays a
role in shaping our final recommendations. We show that short payback periods due
to significant cost savings make the switch to cleaner fuels economically viable today.
Additionally, we provide recommendations for a variety of other energy efficiency
upgrades and retrofits that co-ops can integrate into their buildings as well as suggest
mechanisms for their increased adoption. We also discuss the barriers to the adoption
of many of these upgrades and technologies and suggest ways to overcome them.