Much of the national focus around electrification has centered on the transportation sector and the push toward electric vehicles.

But at the local level, a growing number of cities have also increased attention to their building stocks, using electrification strategies that have evolved in scope.

In the past few years, restricting natural gas hookups in new buildings has been an especially popular strategy throughout California, as well as in other major cities such as Seattle. That tactic is spreading. Last month, Eugene, Oregon, moved forward a resolution to mandate electrification in new buildings, which would make it the first city in the state to adopt such a policy.

The focus of decarbonization policies in recent years has been centered on new construction, said Jenna Tatum, director of the Building Electrification Institute, an organization that helps cities transition away from fossil fuels. But that focus began to change over the past year. "This year seems to be the year where more and more momentum is gaining on addressing existing buildings, which is going to be a much more difficult piece to address," said Tatum, who previously worked in the New York City Mayor's Office of Sustainability.

While Tatum is enthusiastic about the continued push for building decarbonization, she noted that, to date, the majority of policies enacted have focused on large buildings. Most cities have yet to fully tackle how to expand these types of changes to the significant portions of their building stocks comprised of smaller buildings.

"We're going to need a whole policy regime to address smaller buildings, and that has started in some places but there's a lot of work that needs to happen in that space,” Tatum said.

Read the full article about decarbonizing buildings by Maria Rachal at Smart Cities Dive.