Infrastructure Bill Provides Funding for State and Local Building Energy Codes

New legislation could mean more opportunities for the increasing use of high-performance glass and window products. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act signed into law in November 2021, includes an appropriation of $550 million in Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant funding and $500 million in State Energy Program funding for state and local governments to adopt and implement building energy codes. Such a program could be a big plus for those companies that offer high-performance glazing.

The legislation mandates that $225 million will be allocated for competitive grants available through the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to implement building codes. This was good news for the International Code Council’s (ICC) “Code on a Mission” program, which intends for more than one-third of the U.S. population to be covered by the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) by the end of 2023. In addition, for fiscal years 2022 through 2026, $50 million is allocated for financial assistance to states for programs to serve as models for supporting the implementation of smart manufacturing technologies. Each state granted an award must match the funding equal to or less than 30% of the awarded funds.

Funding will allow training for engineers, architects, building scientists, building energy permitting and enforcement officials, and building technicians about energy-efficient design and operation. Opportunities will be identified for optimizing energy efficiency and environmental performance in buildings and promoting the application of emerging concepts and technologies in commercial and institutional buildings. Training for building technicians in higher education institutions will also be available, and research and development will be encouraged to use alternative energy sources and distribution generation to supply heat and power for buildings.

Career skills training will also be available for public and private employers in the industry, labor organizations and joint labor-management training programs.

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