Energy codes and the building design process: Opportunities for improvement [report]

L.J. Sandahl, D.L. Shankle, E.J. Rigler
1994 unpublished
MASTER Foreword " This reportis one in a series of documents describing research activities in support of the U.S. Departmentof Energy (DOE) Building Energy Standards Program. The Pacific Northwest Laboratory(PNL) leads the program for DOE. The goal of the program is to develop and encourage the implementationof perrefinance standardsto achieve the maximum practicableenergy efficiency in the design of new buildings. Such standardsare requiredof DOE by Title III of the Energy _ation and
more » ... nAct (42 USC 6831 et seq.) as amended by the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (1)ublicLaw 102-486). The program apptme.hto meeting the goal is to initiate and manage individual •. researchand stamtatdsand guidelines development efforts thatare planned and conducted in mopegation with represmtafives from throughoutthe buildings conammity. Projects under way involve practicing architectsand engineers, professionalsocieties and code organizations, industry representatives,and from the private sector and nationallaboratories. Research results and technicaljustifications for standardscriteria are provided to standards development and model code organizations and to Federal, State, and local jurisdictions as a basis to update their codes and standards. Tiffs effort helps to ensure thatbuilding standardsincotl)orate the latest research results to achieve maximummergy savings in new buildings, yet remain responsive to the needs of the affected professions, organizations, and jurisdictiom. Our efforts also support the implementation,deployment, and use of energy-efficient codes and standards. This report documentsfindings from results of a survey thatPNL conducted of aschite_ and dmigners to daerminz their knowledge and use of energy codes and mergy-efficiency infonmtion. Readers with questions, commeats, or suggestions about this documentor the work it describes are encouraged to contact the author(s), program managers, or project managers. Summary The Energy Policy Act (EPAc0, passed by Congress in 1992, requires states to adoptbuilding energy codes for new commercial buildings that meet or exceed the Am_can Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and muminating Engineers Society of North America (IES) Standard 90.1-1989 by October 24, 1994. In reponse to EPAct many states will be adopting a state-wideenergy code for the first time. Understandingthe role of stakeholdersin the buildin8 design process is key to the successful implementation of these codes. In 1993, the Pacific Northwest Laboratory(PNL) conducted a survey of architects and designers to determinehow much they know about enetb_ycodes, to what extent mergy-efficiency concerns influence the design process, and how they convey informatioaabout energy-efficient designs and products to their clients. Findings of the PNL survey, togetherwith related informationfrom a survey by the AmericanInstituteof Architects (AIA) and other reports, are presented in this report. This infornmfionmay be helpful for state and utility energy program managersand others who will be involved in promoting the adoption and implementationof state energy codes thatmeet the requirementsof EPAct. Filldhlgs Key findings presented in this reportinclude the following: * The typical commercial building design and developmentprocess involves several key stages thatrequire the specialized efforts of the owner/client, financiers, designers (architectsandengineers), code officials,and ccmtractors. Etch of these parties can influence the building's energy efficiency, but the greatest potential for cost-effective energy efficiency is found in the early stages of the design process. • Axchitw.ts that respondedto the 1993 PNL survey believe that developers, contractors,and the genend public are only moderately concerned about energy code compliance in buildings. Architects rated themselves as having the highest concern (7.7 on a scale from I [little concern] to 10 [very high concentD, followed by code officials who they rated as having an average concern of 6.7. • The highest potential for energy savings occurs during the building design process. Because architects are typically responsible for coordinating the efforts of others involved in the building design and constructionprocess, it , is very importantthatarchitects be involved in programsthat promote the constructionof mergy-efficient buildings. • Architecturalfirms typically have a small number of employees. In fact, 30% ofthemembers of the American Institute of Architects are sole practitioners and 86% have less than 10 employees. However, large firms (over 20 employees) dominate the industry in terms of billings.
doi:10.2172/10163695 fatcat:trfxdfpg6fbivofbd5omjog3ky