NPGA Bobtail

New FAQ on Building Energy Codes Available

NPGA has recently produced an FAQ on building energy codes. Given the complex nature of this topic, the intention is to provide members with an overview of what building energy codes are, their legislative history, how they are developed and implemented, how they intersect with public policy and the role they play in the propane industry. Building energy codes are, in short, regulations that govern the construction of buildings by setting minimum efficiency requirements for new and renovated buildings, assuring reductions in energy use and emissions over the life of the building.

The code adoption process is broken up by federal guidance, state adoption of model codes, then local adoption. Model codes such as the IECC or ASHRAE 90.1 can be adopted with or without amendments, and most states and localities have the ability to adopt a “stretch” code, which is a code that is more aggressive than base code. Municipalities that wish to implement electrification measures can pursue these efforts through stretch code adoption by altering their code to favor all-electric or to attempt to hinder conventional fuel usage.

The propane industry has, for decades, worked side-by-side with code councils at all levels as well as federal and state governments to ensure our voice is heard in the code adoption/development process. However, the code adoption process at the local level can often fly under the radar. As a result, code changes that could pose potential negative impacts to the industry can be cemented in to public policy.

The Codes and Standards and State Affairs teams at NPGA monitors and engages with the codes process on a regular basis, and will continue to represent members before codes councils and before federal, state and local governments to ensure that the industry’s voice is heard. However, it is imperative to note that the code adoption development process itself is open to everyone, and it is to the industry’s benefit to be involved at the very start. Ensuring that propane remains an energy option for consumers who wish to utilize it is a top priority for everyone in the industry. The FAQ document can be accessed on the NPGA Member Dashboard under the Fight Electrification section.

For more information, please contact NPGA’s Manager of State Government Affairs, Austin Wicker.