“$ave Energy—Build to Code” is the Theme for Building Safety Month Week 4
Energy Saving Measures Help Create Better Homes and Businesses and Sustainable Communities
By choosing energy-efficient materials and supplies, homeowners can make positive changes to both inside and outside environments, thus creating better homes and businesses and more sustainable communities. The adoption of current model building codes and standards developed by the International Code Council Family of Companies (ICC), a strong and efficient system of code application, and a dedicated workforce of Building Safety Professionals also are keys to saving energy and money while reducing the carbon footprint of the built environment.
Since 1980, Building Safety Month has been an annual public safety awareness campaign. Sponsored the American Gas Association (AGA), the theme for week four of Building Safety Month 2015, May 25-31, is “$ave Energy—Build to Code.”
“Building green does not necessarily mean starting from scratch or spending more money,” explained ICC Board of Directors President Guy Tomberlin, CBO. “There are many ways to improve the green factor in existing homes and businesses by using longer-lasting and sustainable materials. Investing in the efficiency of buildings and promoting smart energy choices save energy and money while maintaining the comfort and productivity of homes and businesses.”
The 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), published by ICC, addresses energy efficiency on several fronts including cost savings, reduced usage, conservation of natural resources and the impact of energy usage on the environment. The IECC is currently in use or adopted in 47 states, New York City, the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.
The International Green Construction Code (IgCC), developed by ICC and the American Institute of Architects, ASTM International, ASHRAE, U.S. Green Building Council, and the Illuminating Engineering Society, is the first model code to include sustainability measures for the entire construction project and its site — from design through construction, certificate of occupancy and beyond. The IgCC offers flexibility to jurisdictions that adopt the code by establishing several levels of compliance, starting with the core provisions of the code and then offering “jurisdictional requirement” options that can be customized to fit the needs of a local community.
The National Green Building Standard, a collaborative effort between ICC and the National Association of Home Builders, provides green building practices that can be incorporated into new homes, including high-rise multifamily buildings, home remodeling and additions, hotels and motels, and the site upon which the green homes are located. Four threshold levels provide builders with a means to achieve basic, entry-level green building, or achieve the highest level of sustainable green building that incorporates energy savings of 60 percent or higher.
Following are energy efficiency tips you can apply in your home or business:
- Use energy-efficient light bulbs.
- Seal air leaks.
- Install programmable thermostats.
- Upgrade windows, heating and air conditioning equipment.
- Change filters frequently.
- Install more insulation in walls and attics.
- Choose energy efficient appliances.
For more information, go to this AGA factsheet that features statistics about natural gas and efficiency, ways to work with your utility to make your home more efficient, and other tips on increasing energy efficiency.
About us: The International Code Council is a member-focused association. It is dedicated to developing model codes and standards used in the design, build and compliance process to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures. Most U.S. communities and many global markets choose the International Codes.