ASHRAE teams up to clarify stimulus act funding.

Press Release Summary:



National building energy organizations, working with U.S. DOE, have developed explanatory statement for state and local governments to clarify intent of Section 410 of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. It offers assistance as states and localities adopt, provide training on, and enforce advanced building energy efficiency codes. Statement addresses government grants and work that groups are doing to attain building code-related funding from Congress.



Original Press Release:



National Building Energy Leaders Clarify Stimulus Act Funding



Washington, D.C. - Working in tandem with the U.S. Department of Energy, a group of national building energy organizations, noted for their broad leadership role in national energy efficiency policy, have developed an explanatory statement for state and local governments to clarify the intent of Section 410 of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and to offer assistance as states and localities adopt, provide training on and enforce advanced building energy efficiency codes.

The participants, which include ASHRAE, issued the following remarks regarding their statement, which can be found at ashrae.org/recovery:

We have joined forces to clarify what Congress intended to be crystal clear when it linked building energy code adoption and enforcement with funding under Section 410 of ARRA. By accepting State Energy Program funding and submitting letters assuring the Department of Energy that their states would comply with the terms of Section 410, all 50 states have committed to do three things:

1. Adopt a residential building energy code that meets or exceeds the 2009 IECC;

2. Adopt a commercial building energy code that meets or exceeds the ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 and;

3. Develop and implement a plan, including active training and enforcement provisions, to achieve 90 percent compliance with the target codes by 2017, including measuring current compliance each year.

"This joint effort is another step in ensuring a strong foundation of energy efficiency in this country," ASHRAE President Gordon Holness said. "We encourage states to take advantage of the State Energy Program funding and work to ensure a more energy efficient future for our buildings, nationwide."

Key Deadlines Are Swiftly Approaching. With only a few states having adopted codes that "meet or exceed" the target codes, most states have a long way to go. ARRA requires State plans to be designed to achieve 90 percent compliance with codes by 2017 and to make annual compliance progress assessments. The February 2010 anniversary of ARRA marks the act's first compliance deadline for states.

To ensure ARRA compliance, it is in each State's best interest to begin the process of adopting target codes (or better) and to develop the means to train code officials to enforce them as soon as possible, according to the statement.

Help and Funding Are Available for Enforcement and Training. In addition to revenue from building inspection fees, funding for enforcement and training is available from federal grants (including SEP and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG)) and from existing state and federal energy efficiency funds. In addition, the groups issuing this statement are working closely together to boost new building code-related funding in the pending climate and energy legislation before Congress, according to the statement.

A list of participating organizations follows.

Alliance to Save Energy

American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy

The American Institute of Architects

American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers

Building Codes Assistance Project

Building Energy Efficient Codes Network

International Code Council

National Association of State Energy Officials

Natural Resources Defense Council

Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance

Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance

Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance

Southwest Energy Efficiency Project

U.S. Green Building Council

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