Building CodesNew This WeekNewsletter

Building Code Battle Ramps up Ahead of Key Appeals Hearings

Industry groups and energy efficiency advocates are in conflict, threatening to upend efforts by a key standards-setter to update guidelines for equipping new and existing homes and commercial buildings for the transition away from fossil fuels.

The International Code Council is to hear appeals to its 2024 model standards. The decisions, made by the the four-member panel, will likely reverberate in cities and states around the country. This is where the codes are amended, adopted and implemented.

According to E&E News, Some provisions of the updated model codes are being challenged by the American Gas Association and other groups representing the air conditioning and heating industry, building owners and multifamily housing. The most contentious measures are related to how new and retrofitted homes and commercial buildings should be equipped to adopt heat pumps and electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

The appeals represent one of the first major tests for the organization’s procedural overhauls — and for the ability of conservation groups to lock in efficiency standards and electrification readiness as building code battles ignite firestorms across the country, particularly over activists’ efforts to enact gas bans. It’s a dispute that’s reached Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm’s desk and is getting attention from companies such as Tesla.

Read More