Brookline and Watertown became the first communities to adopt the new building code regulations put forth by the state Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources. The new code includes strict parameters for energy efficiency, with requirements such as solar panels in new constructions buildings that plan to install gas line connections. It also requires new constructions buildings to be “fully pre-wired” for electrification. This would allow future owners to easily change gas-powered appliances and water heaters for electric versions.
The main goal of the regulations is to address the usage of fossil fuels for heating homes, which is one of the state’s largest sources of emissions, and promote the electrification of space and water heat. At this time, the code will only apply to new construction properties in cities and towns that choose to adopt it.
In addition to Brookline and Watertown, it is expected that Cambridge, Wellesley, Arlington, Acton, Belmont, Concord, and Lincoln may adopt the new regulations in the near future.