On February 22, the Boston Globe published an article on Boston’s new building energy disclosure ordinance. Here is NEEP’s response, submitted as a letter to the editor:
“We, at NEEP, were delighted to see the article regarding Mayor Menino’s proposed building energy reporting ordinance [Menino takes on Boston buildings' energy use, 2.22.2013] featured on the front page of the Globe. We couldn’t agree more with the mayor’s commitment to high performance buildings and building energy disclosure as a means to tackle aggressive energy and GHG reduction goals. This law is a huge win for everyone and will make Boston’s real estate portfolio even more attractive and lucrative to investors. Continue reading
Last week, a damaging bill (HB 5749) for building energy efficiency was heard in Connecticut. The bill describes itself as attempting to “save resources” for the Nutmeg State and creates a “more consistent State Building Code,” when in fact it would accomplish neither! Here is NEEP’s written testimony against the bill.
HB 5749, if passed, would have Connecticut revise the State Building Code only every six years! NEEP strongly recommends that all states update their state building and energy codes at least every three years, corresponding with the International Code Council’s (ICC) update cycle. It’s the surest way to align a state building code with the latest developments in building technologies and practices, and achieve the energy and cost savings, not to mention life/safety requirements, the codes are designed for.
BAR pilot participant – Cambridge City Hall Annex
Determining a commercial building’s asset rating (see sidebar) is a time-consuming process involving multiple site visits, meticulous data collection, engineers and energy modeling, and can cost anywhere from $15-30,000 per building! All of this begs the question: Is there a faster, cheaper, more effective way of evaluating a building’s energy performance? Continue reading
Buildings are our nation’s biggest energy guzzlers, using 40% of our energy and 70% of our electricity.
As the nation makes strides to improve the energy performance of its building stock, one effective method of doing this is with building energy codes. Building energy codes play a central role in creating a sustainable energy future by significantly reducing building energy use and ensuring safe and affordable dwellings for its businesses and citizens.
Over the past six months, the Northeast has been hammered with unexpected and extreme weather. Tornadoes tore through Western Massachusetts in June and Hurricane Irene wreaked havoc throughout the entire region in August, devastating Vermont with the worst flooding they’ve seen in 84 years. We also felt the strongest earthquake to rattle the region since World War II, and last month’s October snowstorm left a reported three million on the East Coast without power. The image below of Connecticut Light & Power (CL&P)’s power outage map, taken on the morning of October 30, begins to illustrate the stark and extensive aftereffects of these storms. During the peak of the outage 830,000 customers were left in the dark: no lights, no heat, no water…and in some towns for as long as 10 days. These events force communities and government to seriously grapple with, and possibly rethink, emergency preparedness plans. Continue reading
ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007
— In the world of advanced building energy codes, it’s a major disappointment.
ASHRAE 90.2 is a Residential Energy Standard published by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) that provides guidance for meeting minimum energy efficiency requirements in low-rise residential buildings (single family to multi-family). And in its current draft, 90.2 is under ASHRAE committee review.