Administration Launches Building Performance Standards Coalition

The Administration’s new Building Performance Standards Coalition (BPS) is striving to deliver cleaner, healthier and more affordable buildings. It wants 4 million and 2 million homes retrofitted for energy performance.

John McClatchey, vice president of sales and marketing for Southern Aluminum Finishing (SAF) in Atlanta, sees the partnership as a positive move.

McClatchey says changes in climate will eventually affect how buildings are built.

“We need to stand ready to pivot to whatever direction that will be with glass, glazing and aluminum,” he says.

According to the coalition, nearly 20% of the nation’s building footprint falls within the coalition’s jurisdictions. The partnership looks to facilitate “new commitments to design and implement building performance standards at the state and local level, create good-paying, union jobs, lower energy bills for consumers, keep residents and workers safe from harmful pollution and cut emissions from the building sector.”

Paul Bush, Vitro’s vice president of technical services and government affairs, says his company supports the coalition. “We absolutely support any effort to upgrade the energy efficiency of existing buildings, including the Building Performance Standards Coalition and the communities that have signed on to participate,” he says. “Communities that have a building performance plan to upgrade their buildings, can improve energy efficiency, improve occupant comfort, have a positive impact on climate change and will create a lot of local economic opportunities in the process.

Kathy Krafka Harkema, U.S. technical operations director for the Fenestration and Glazing Industry Alliance (FGIA), also views the initiative as a positive move for the industry. “By encouraging the transformation of existing buildings into affordable housing options, the coalition will help serve a critical need in many communities across the country. Plus, with a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the coalition’s work is designed to help America and many of its cities meet their net-zero energy goals,” Krafka Harkema says.

Helen Sanders with Technoform says that building performance standards have been growing in the U.S. for years and have found a place in cities and states that have wanted to drive climate change action.

“What is new is that the BPS represents the full force of the federal government being provided to cities and states to help them enact BPS policies and programs with an emphasis on addressing emissions in a manner that also supports social equity. Federal agencies including the Department of Energy are providing technical support and funding programs for the initiative, including retrofitting of existing buildings,” Sanders explains.

She expects an acceleration of BPS to be implemented across the U.S., now seeing support from the federal government.

“For the glazing industry, this will likely encourage more envelope retrofits … It will also encourage design teams of new construction to focus on ensuring long-term energy performance …”

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