A Civic Information Project


Colorado plans to cut emissions by 50% in 2030 and 90% in 2050 through clean energy policies. Optimization strategies encompass electrification, improved efficiency, smart buildings, and a thoughtful design process.
We’re all in this together and you’re part of the solution.
Easy Guide to Colorado Tax Credits & Building Codes
Keep Up with
Building Codes:
New codes include electric-ready, solar-ready, and electric vehicle (EV) ready requirements.
Tax Credits for
Green Building:
Check out these tax credits
for residential and
commercial structures.
Easy Guide to Colorado Tax Credits & Building Codes
Keep Up with Building Codes:
New codes include electric-ready, solar-ready, and electric vehicle (EV) ready requirements.
Tax Credits for Green Building:
Check out these tax credits for residential and commercial structures.


Learn how to how to navigate tax credits and building codes for maximum savings and environmental impact.

Commercial Buildings

Residential Buildings

Industrial Buildings

FAQ: Sustainable Building Practices

Sustainable Building Practices and Energy Efficiency

There are many ways clean energy can have an incredible impact on our lives well beyond just the environment. Learn more here.

  • For residential buildings and homes, an energy assessment/audit is an ideal way to pinpoint ways to make your home more energy-efficient.
  • For existing commercial buildings, check with building management to conduct an energy audit
  • For new construction commercial buildings, we recommend bringing in a design consultant

Air source electric heat pumps are significantly (200-300%+) more efficient than gas equipment resulting in operational cost savings. In order for Colorado to meet its sustainability goals, electric heat pumps will need to comprise over 60% of residential heating equipment sales by 2030 and over 95% by 2040, up from about 2% today.  In Colorado, Group 14 Engineering and Community Energy Inc. conducted a study that evaluated system options, economics, and strategies to achieve electrification of buildings.  The study found that for single family homes, the upfront cost of all electric space and water heaters is about 25% less expensive than homes with comparable natural gas-powered equipment. There are significant Federal, State and local rebates to further reduce the capital cost for the heating system and any necessary home upgrades. Especially when combined with PV, operating costs will be lower than using natural gas.

Learn more here.

Here are some benefits to energy efficient windows, doors and skylights.

Energy Efficiency Incentives and Resources

The following tax credits are available through the Inflation Reduction Act for households and businesses looking to increase their energy efficiency. Additional information about these IRA tax credits, beyond the details outlined below, can be found here.

  • IRS’ Energy Efficient Commercial Buildings Deduction
    For property placed in service in 2023 and after, the deduction equals the lesser of:
    The cost of the installed property
    The savings per square foot calculated as:
    • $0.50 per square foot for a building with 25% energy savings.
    • Plus $0.02 per square foot for each percentage point of energy savings above 25%
    • Up to a maximum of $1.00 per square foot for a building with 50% energy savings. Expenses deducted in the prior 3 years (4 years for an allocated deduction) reduce the maximum deduction before computing the current-year deduction.
  • Home Clean Electricity Products: Federal tax credits equivalent to 30% of the cost of ‘home clean electricity products’ – e.g., solar electricity products; fuel cells; wind turbines; and battery storage – can be claimed through the 2032 tax year. 
  • Heating, Cooling, and Water Heating: Federal tax credits equivalent to 30% of the cost (up to $2,000 per year) of air source heat pumps (as a replacement for A.C. and central heating), heat pump water heaters (as a replacement for traditional water heaters), and biomass stoves can be claimed through the 2032 tax year. Additionally, 30% of the cost of geothermal heat pumps and solar water heaters (with no yearly cap) can also be claimed. Finally, 30% (up to $600 per year) of the cost of efficient air conditioners, heating equipment, and water heating equipment can be claimed as well. These tax credits, like those applied to other clean energy products, are available through the 2032 tax year.
  • Other Energy Efficiency Upgrades: Additional tax credits equivalent to 30% (with varying yearly caps, depending on the equipment) can be claimed on other key energy efficiency equipment. The approved equipment includes: electric panel or circuit upgrades for new electric equipment; insulation materials; windows, including skylights; exterior doors; and home energy audits. 

Additional information on other Federal tax incentives, as well as Colorado State tax incentives, available to Colorado households and businesses can be found here.

Colorado’s Green Initiatives and Energy Policy

To achieve this goal, the Colorado Energy Office (CEO) in January 2021 released the state’s Greenhouse Gas Pollution Roadmap (“GHG Roadmap”), which outlines an achievable statewide decarbonization pathway. The GHG Roadmap identifies hydrogen as a potentially important low-carbon fuel for beyond 2030, especially to reduce emissions in hard-to-electrify sectors. Here’s the Roadmap of Opportunities for Low-Carbon Hydrogen in Colorado.

Colorado has a Statewide Benchmarking Program of Energy Performance for Buildings that requires owners of commercial, multifamily and public buildings over 50,000 square feet to benchmark their energy usage using the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and submit it to the Colorado Energy Office by June 1st, annually. Learn more here.

Yes! Colorado Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) Program enables owners of eligible commercial and industrial buildings to finance up to 100% of energy efficiency, renewable energy and water conservation eligible improvements. Financing is provided by private capital providers at competitive rates with repayment terms up to 25 years. Building owners are empowered to modernize building energy infrastructure, lower energy costs, increase building comfort and asset value – with no upfront costs while enjoying positive cash flow. C-PACE projects also advance public policy goals to create local jobs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase renewable energy deployment.

Property Regulations in Colorado

Commercial Buildings

Building net-zero energy commercial structures, whether through new constructions or retrofits, delivers substantial reductions in annual energy costs and significantly lowers environmental impact.

Best practice recommendations:

  • Use electric heat pumps or VRF systems for efficient heating/cooling
  • Ensure proper insulation and room sealing
  • Install sensors, timers, and smart technology
  • Install a building energy management system to simplify energy reporting for current and future legislative requirements
  • Consider an Energy Efficiency-as-a-Service provider to deploy a pay-for-performance, off-balance sheet financing solution that allows customers to implement energy and water efficiency projects with no upfront capital expenditure.

See it in action:

  • RMI Innovation Center, Basalt
  • Boulder Commons, Boulder
  • 1144 Fifteenth, Optiv building, Denver

Residential Buildings

Whether as a resident, manager, owner, or developer—embracing net-zero housing can bolster your financial bottom line, enhance resident well-being, and contribute to emission reductions.

Best practice recommendations:

  • Get an energy audit to discover the best way to be more efficient.
  • Switch to induction stoves
  • Install air source electric heat pumps
  • Incorporate solar panels
  • Choose eco-friendly appliances
  • Upgrade to double-paned windows
  • Practice energy-saving habits

See it in action:

  • Cohen family home, Lakewood
  • Aspen Skiing Company’s Willits Block 9, Basalt
  • Hirschfeld Tower, 209-unit property, Denver

Industrial Buildings

Industrial buildings, encompassing warehouses, distribution centers, and greenhouses share a significant building footprint and high electricity demand.

Best practice recommendations:

  • Add solar panels or urban gardens.
  • Use electric heaters and coolers for smaller spaces.
  • Improve building envelope and use reflective roof coatings.
  • Reduce energy demand through lighting and HVAC upgrades.
  • Explore low or no carbon alternatives like geothermal energy, concentrated solar, and hydrogen, which can vary significantly depending on your temperature and energy requirements.

See it in action:

  • REI Distribution Warehouse, Goodyear, Arizona