ATLANTA – A new assessment report to the U.S. Congress and a new congressional caucus, both addressing high-performing buildings, was unveiled at a briefing with the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) as the lead sponsor. The two-hour briefing included Rep. Judy Bigger (R-IL) and Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-MO), co-chairs of a newly formed High Performance Building Congressional Caucus.

“Rising energy costs and the increased global awareness of the potential impact of climate change continues to drive home the need for low-energy, environmentally responsible, high-performance buildings, which are the future,” said Kent Peterson, P.E., ASHRAE president.

“As such, we need to be more determined to deliver buildings that perform. I am encouraged by the efforts I am seeing in the recommendations contained in this report and formation of the caucus to encourage design, operation, and maintenance of high-performance buildings.”

According to ASHRAE, Congress drafted Section 914 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to address not just more energy-efficient buildings, but rather high-performance buildings that combine the objectives of reducing resource energy consumption and improving the comfort and productivity of building occupants. Congress maintains that achieving both these goals would have a positive economic and societal effect.

Former ASHRAE president Bill Coad served as chair of the committee that wrote the soon-to-be-released assessment to the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Department of Energy on high performance buildings. Overseen by the National Institute for Building Sciences, the report contains seven recommendations to assist in encouraging the creation and operation of high-performance buildings. He spoke at the briefing, along with Get Moy, current chair of the High Performance Building Council.

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Publication date:06/30/2008