The Modi Research Group’s New York City Energy Mapping Project based on this study was jointly presented by Professor Vijay Modi and PhD student, Bianca Howard at the NorthEast Clean Heat and Power Initiative conference. The interactive map represents the total annual building energy consumption at the block level and at the taxlot level for New York City, and is expressed in kilowatt hours (kWh) per square meter of land area. The estimate for New York City-specific building energy use was based on statistical  model  that utilizes zipcode-level energy consumption data to estimate the average annual energy use for every tax lot—at practically building level—through all five boroughs of the city.

“This is a critical issue,” said Modi. “While discussions frequently focus on electricity use, homes in New York City, whether a townhouse or a large apartment building, use far more energy in form of heat rather than electricity. Nearly all of this heat is obtained from heating oil or natural gas. In addition, current electricity distribution infrastructure in many urban areas relies on large amounts of electricity brought in from outside the city, making it difficult to support increased future use without requiring significant investment of resources and funds. We are looking at ways we can address both these issues—reducing our heating bills and increasing local electricity generation capacity.”

This energy use was further broken down into what the building uses for space heating, space cooling, water heating, and base electric applications such as lighting. To see the break down hover over or click on a block or taxlot. The map has been featured in various news article and media sources like NYTimes, WSJ, Huffington Post, GIZMODO , Fast Company and the National Geographic Magazine.