ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. — The International Green Construction Code (IGCC) has become the first building code to adopt minimum efficiency levels based on AMCA Standard 205, Energy Classification for Fans.

The IGCC is a new green code for commercial buildings developed by the International Code Council in collaboration with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The IGCC will be published in March 2012.

AMCA 205 was first published in 2010 by the Air Movement and Control Association (AMCA) International. The standard defines how to calculate the “fan efficiency grade” (FEG) of a fan based on its aerodynamic design, independent of motors and drives. The higher the FEG rating, the higher the potential fan efficiency.

“Having FEG levels specified in the first edition of the IGCC is a big win for AMCA and its members,” said Wade Smith, executive director of AMCA International. “Millions of fans installed in commercial buildings in the U.S. are wasting energy because they were improperly sized or selected, or the owners opted for lesser efficient models due to the lack of an energy-efficiency metric for fans. AMCA developed Standard 205 and FEG as a fan efficiency metric to help designers, contractors, owners, and code officials improve the performance of air systems in commercial buildings, and we look forward to working with them to consider FEG’s when designing for green construction and higher energy efficiency.”

AMCA noted that another milestone was achieved with the 2012 IGCC allowing air curtains to be considered as an option for vestibules. Air curtains are installed above exterior door thresholds and blow a film (curtain) of air downward when the door is opened, trapping conditioned air inside the building. Air curtains tested in accordance with AMCA 220 help building owners save valuable floor space that vestibules consume merely to trap air between a double set of doors.

“Air curtains are an excellent choice for retail and office buildings, where floor space is at a premium. Not only are air curtains effective, they have a lower first cost than the second set of doors,” said Smith.

AMCA 205 and AMCA 220 are available at no cost at For more information about the fan efficiency language in the IGCC, visit

Publication date: 01/02/2012