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JCI Commits to Environmentally Sustainable Refrigerant (Ind. Report)
Johnson Controls
Date: 2021-06-04
Milwaukee, Wisconsin-headquartered Johnson Controls (JCI) is reporting The Chemours Company manufactured Opteon™ XL41™ (R-454B) will serve as the primary low Global Warming Potential (GWP) refrigerant in the company's ducted residential and commercial unitary products as well as air-cooled scroll chillers in North America and specific international markets where codes are in alignment.

According to the JCI release, with the transition to R-454B refrigerant transition "we will exceed key regulatory requirements and also take a significant step toward reaching one of our ambitious sustainability benchmarks: helping our customers achieve a 16 percent reduction in emissions by 2030."

R-454B has the lowest EPA SNAP approved GWP for unitary applications of all ASHRAE classified A2L (low-toxicity, mild flammability) refrigerants on the market today, coming in at 466 -- one-fifth the GWP of R-410A, far lower than the pending 750 GWP limits being proposed and offering the longest-term viability. In addition, the refrigerant can reduce the energy use of HVAC systems and improve system efficiency.

The transition to R-454B will apply only to the sale of new air-cooled scroll chillers by the pending manufacturing cutoff date of January 1, 2024, and residential and commercial unitary products by the pending manufacturing cutoff date of January 1, 2025, for the following brands: Johnson Controls, YORK, Luxaire, Coleman, Champion, Fraser-Johnston, TempMaster,, Evcon,, Guardian and Quantech. Existing R-410A equipment manufactured prior to the manufacturing cutoff dates can be sold, installed and serviced indefinitely. (Source: Johnson Controls, PR, 27 May, 2021) Contact: Johnson Controls, Katie McGinty, VP Sustainability, Government and Regulatory Affairs, Katie.mcginty@jci.com, www.jci.com; Chemours, www.chemours.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Johnson Controls ,  


Mass. DOER Issues Clean Energy, Efficiency Grants (Ind. Report)
Mass. DOER
Date: 2020-10-26
In the Bay State, the Department of Energy Resources' (DOER) Municipal Energy Technical Assistance (META) program reports awarding $250,000 in grant funding to support the development of clean energy projects in 20 cities and towns across Massachusetts.

META grants are used by Massachusetts municipalities, regional school districts, and water/wastewater districts to aid in the management of projects or the performance of studies to support the development of clean energy and energy efficiency in the Commonwealth. Open to all 351 cities and towns, META grants fund the services of expert consultants and contractors to assist with a diverse array of local energy projects.

Projects and studies receiving funding will support the performance of solar photovoltaic site evaluation, heating system replacements, ASHRAE Level II audits, technical analysis of energy use at drinking water and wastewater facilities and technical assistance with efficient building planning, maintenance, and operation. Part of DOER's Green Communities Division, the grants are funded through proceeds from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).

Under the Green Communities Act, cities and towns must meet five criteria to be designated a Green Community and receive funding. 271 Bay State cities and towns accounting for 84 pct of the state's population have earned the Green Communities designation. (Source: Department of Energy Resources, Worcester Telegram, 25 Oct., 2020)Contact: Mass. Department of Energy Resources, 617-626-7300, www.mass.gov/orgs/massachusetts-department-of-energy-resources; RGGI, www.rggi.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News RGGI,  Mass DOER,  Energy Efficiency,  Renewable Energy,  RGGI,  


Delaware Updates Building Energy Efficiency Codes (Ind. Report)
Delaware Division of Climate, Coastal and Energy
Date: 2020-06-22
In Dover, the Delaware Division of Climate, Coastal and Energy (DNREC) is reporting building code updates that include energy efficiency improvements, increased residential air sealing requirements, hot water pipe insulation, and energy efficient windows and lighting options, as well as more efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning system operation resulting from these improvements.

Delaware first established a minimum statewide code for energy conservation in 1979. The code, which is based on standards set by the International Code Council (ICC) and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHREA) was last updated in 2009.

The update includes a six-month transition period, during which the Division of Climate, Coastal and Energy will provide targeted training and technical assistance to the construction industry and code enforcement officials. Topics covered by the training will include an overview of the changes, practical compliance strategies, particularly for the building envelope requirements in the new energy codes, construction and design strategies for air sealing smaller homes, and hot water pipe insulation and HVAC duct design. (Source: DNREC, Cape Gazette, June, 2020) Contact: DNREC Division of Climate, Coastal and Energy, www.dnrec.alpha.delaware.gov/climate-coastal-energy

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Building Energy,  Energy Consumption,  ASHRAE,  


NYC Building Energy Conservation Code Updated (Ind. Report)
New York City
Date: 2020-05-11
In the Empire State, the Big Apple is reporting the updating its New York City Energy Conservation Code (NYCECC) which will be current with the New York State 2020 Energy Conservation Construction Code.

The State code is based on the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code and ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2016. The 2020 NYCECC will become effective May 12, 2020, the same effective date as the state's energy code which aligns the code with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) NYStretch Energy Code-2020, as adopted by the New York City Council on March 29, 2020.

The 2020 New York City Energy Code includes energy efficiency requirements help to improve overall building envelope performance through installation of better performing and more energy efficient windows and other initiatives.

Access the 2020 NYC Energy Conservation Code HERE (Source: NYC City Council, Door & Window Market, 8 May, 2020)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Building Energy Eficiency,  Energy Management,  Energy Conservation,  ASHRAE,  NYSERDA,  


DOE Changes Update Efficiency Standards Process (Ind. Report)
US DOE
Date: 2020-01-24
The Trump administration DOE's recently announced changes to the Process Rule reverse benefits achieved owing to the adoption of previous and current climate-friendly energy efficiency regulations are being widely questioned.

The changes add new and lengthy steps to the procedure used in updating existing or developing new energy efficiency standards include:

  • A minimum savings threshold that will make new standards for many products illegal, even if the standards have zero cost.

  • Increased deference to industry developed test procedures, which may emphasize reducing manufacturer costs rather than efficiency ratings that give consumers accurate information.

  • Increased deference to standards established by ASHRAE for commercial products, a professional society in which manufacturers have a strong voice, rather than those developed by DOE.

  • A pre-rulemaking process that can lead to a decision to not conduct a rulemaking.

  • The requirement that DOE re-start the standards rulemaking process whenever more products are included within the scope of regulation, once again forcing a choice between including products that logically should be part of a rule, or more delay.

  • A mandate that makes the process rule legally binding in all instances, which will create endless litigation further tying up future standards.

    The previous Process Rule, which was climate-friendly, would help in reducing carbon emissions and saved the average US household $500 per year. The Trump administration claims the revealed Process Rule will save consumers about $2 trillion by 2030.

    According to ACEEE Exec. Dir. Steven Nadel, "These attacks defy the common-sense, bipartisan support that energy efficiency has long enjoyed. They will cost consumers and businesses money, create market uncertainty for businesses due to likely legal challenges, add to harmful pollution, and undermine efforts to address the climate crisis." (Source: ACEEE, Various Media, Smart Energy Int'l., 23 Jan., 2020)

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  


  • ASHRAE Guides Target Net-Zero Energy Office Bldgs. (Ind. Report)
    American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers
    Date: 2019-12-13
    ASHRAE -- the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers -- reports the availability of its nely published guides on designing K-12 and small to medium office buildings that achieve net-zero energy consumption without compromising quality.

    Building on previous guides targeting deep energy savings, the first two new guides were developed in partnership with the American Institute of Architects, Illuminating Engineering Society, and U.S. Green Building Council.

    Additional information on the new guides is HERE. (Source: American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning EngineersFacilitiesNet, 12 Dec., 2019)Contact: ASHRAE, (404) 636-8400, www.ashrae.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Net-Zero Energy,  Energy Efficiency,  ASHRAE,  


    ASHRAE Releases Updated Data Center Energy Standard (Ind. Report)
    ASHRAE
    Date: 2019-12-13
    ASHRAE has released a revised version of its energy standard for data centers. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 90.4-2019, Energy Standard for Data Centers, establishes the minimum energy-efficiency requirements for data center design and operation, with special consideration to their unique load requirements compared to other buildings.

    Standard 90.4 applies to data centers with a conditioned floor area greater than 20 W/ft2 and IT equipment loads greater than 10 kW and contains specific requirements for mechanical and electrical systems installed in new data centers or in data center additions/alterations that require new mechanical or electrical systems. Updates to the standard include:

  • Mechanical efficiency requirements based on yearly energy calculations and no longer include a power calculation option. Included table values are also aligned with the newest ASHRAE Climate Zones

  • Significant improvements are made to uninterruptible power supply (UPS) technology. Mechanical and electrical infrastructure elements are addressed. Updated UPS segment tables reflect available hardware, and average outputs are also included. (Source: ASHRAE, PR, 11 Dec., 2019)Contact: ASHRAE, Sheila Hayter, Pres, (404) 636-8400, www.ashrae.org More Low-Carbon Energy News ASHRAE,  Data Center,  Energy Efficiency,  

    More Low-Carbon Energy News ASHRAE,  Data Center,  Energy Efficiency,  


  • BuiltGreen Launches High Density Renovation Pilot (Ind. Report)
    BuiltGreen Canada
    Date: 2019-10-02
    Built Green Canada is reporting the launch of its High Density Renovation Program pilot with four office-to-residential re-purposing and energy efficiency projects in Calgary and Edmonton.

    Alongside Built Green's Single Family Renovation Program, also applicable to multi-family low rise, the High Density (HD) Renovation Program offers builders a means to renovate high density and high density mixed-use buildings more sustainably.

    To qualify for the HD Renovation program, substantial upgrades/retrofits must be made to the energy-related building systems, including the building envelope and the mechanical and electrical systems. The energy performance of the building's upgrades and retrofits are then compared to the requirements of the current energy standard or energy code used for modeling with ASHRAE 90.1-2010 or NECB 2011 to show energy savings resulting from the renovation. Beyond efficiency, the renovations must be sustainable.

    Strategic Group has four high density renovation projects enrolled in this pilot. Additionally, the company has two projects enrolled in Built Green High Density New Construction, while yet another project was certified in 2017.

    Built Green Canada is a national, industry-driven, not-for-profit organization offering third-party certification programs in the residential building sector. Since its inception, builders have completed over 32,750 BUILT GREEN® certified homes in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Ontario; including units in multi-storey projects, this total is over 36,090 (as at March 31, 2019).

    Download the BuiltGreen® Canada pilot program HERE (Source: BuiltGreen Canada, PR, 30 Sept., 2019) Contact: Built Green Canada, Jennifer Christenson, CEO, 780.485.0920, jchristenson@builtgreencanada.ca,, www.builtgreencanada.ca

    More Low-Carbon Energy News BuiltGreen Canada,  Energy Efficiency,  


    ASHRAE, US DOE Ink Cooperation Agreement (Ind. Report)
    US DOE EERE
    Date: 2019-06-12
    ASHRAE -- the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers -- reports the recenting inking of a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the U.S. Dept. of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) formalizing its co-operation with the U.S. government to implement numerous initiatives to improve energy efficiency in buildings. ASHRAE and DOE seek to work cooperatively to:
  • Improve the efficient use of energy, building resiliency and improve building performance;

  • Encourage the continued development of voluntary consensus-based standards related to energy efficiency and encourage the adoption of technologically feasible and economically justified energy efficiency measures in each succeeding version of Standard 90.1 (Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings) by states to ensure energy and cost savings;

  • Provide and encourage the use of clear and consistent information to the building industry about building energy rating and labeling;

  • Work within the building community and related professions to encourage the interoperability of building related software and integrated solutions. (Source: ASHRAE, Website, 28 May, 2019) Contact: ASHRAE, Sheila Hayter, Pres, (404) 636-8400, www.ashrae.org; US DOE, www.energy.gov/eere/office-energy-efficiency-renewable-energy

    More Low-Carbon Energy News DOE EERE,  ASHRAE,  Energy Eficiency,  


  • Bipartisan Building Energy Efficiency Legislation Tabled (Reg & Leg)
    Energy Efficiency
    Date: 2019-06-03
    In Washington, U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew (D-NJ) and Mike Kelly (R-PA) have introduced the Commercial, Low Emissions and Net Energy Reduction (CLEANER) Buildings Act of 2019 which would extend the tax deduction for energy efficient commercial buildings. If this incentive is renewed, the deduction -- aka 179D -- could generate thousands of new design and construction jobs and contribute millions to the gross domestic product, according to the release.

    Section 179D of the tax code offers a tax deduction to building owners and businesses for energy efficiency improvements such as lighting, heating and cooling, hot water systems, ventilation, or the building envelope like insulation or windows. It offers incentives for upgrades at new or existing buildings that cut the total energy and power cost by at least 50 percent compared to a building meeting the ASHRAE codes baseline for energy efficiency.

    Jason Hartke, CEO, Alliance to Save Energy states, "This is a key tax incentive for encouraging energy efficiency in commercial buildings, which account for about 20 percent of U.S. energy consumption. It is important that Congress extend this incentive to give building owners and designers the certainty they need to make these investments." (Source: Office of Rep. Jeff Van Drew, PR, Cap May Herald, 31 May, 2019) Contact: Office of Rep. Jeff Van Drew, www.vandrew.house.gov; Rep Mike Kelly, https://kelly.house.gov; Alliance to Save Energy, (202) 857-0666, www.ase.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency,  Alliance to Save Energy,  


    2018 International Green Construction Code Released (Ind. Report)
    International Green Construction Code
    Date: 2018-11-14
    The 2018 International Green Construction Code (2018-IgCC) was released today by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), International Code Council, ASHRAE and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES). The IgCC is a model code that has wide applicability for incorporating resilient, high-performance green building strategies into building codes.

    The 2018-IgCC update will help governments streamline code development and adoption, and improve building industry standardization by combining the technical requirements developed by the ASHRAE Standard 189.1 with the model code administrative provisions by the Code Council. As a result, the 2018-IgCC is now a unified code that emphasizes adoption, ease of use and enforcement for building projects.

    The IgCC is a part of the Code Council's suite of comprehensive, coordinated and contemporary model codes -- including the International Building Code, International Existing Building Code, International Energy Conservation Code, International Mechanical Code, International Plumbing Code and International Fire Code -- and is suitable for use in building codes world wide. (Source: USGBC, ICC, PR, Nov., 2018) Contact: ICC, Dominic Sims, CEO, www.iccsafe.org; USGBC, Mahesh Ramanujam, Pres., CEO, (202) 552-1500, www.usgbc.org; ASHRAE, www.ashrae.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News International Code Council,  International Green Construction Code,  Green Building,  Energy Efficiency,  USGBC ,  


    Montreal's Technopole Angus Scores LEED v4 Platinum (Ind. Report)
    LEED
    Date: 2018-10-15
    Reporting from Montreal, the Societe de developpement Angus has announced that the development plan for Montreal’s Technopole Angus 37,000-square-metre neighbourhood mixed-use project has obtained LEED v4 Platinum certification for sustainable neighbourhood design.

    The project will include: 360 residential units, 80 pct of which will be social and affordable housing; 45,000 square metres of office space; 3,000 square metres of commercial space; an elementary school and two new public daycare centres; 550 underground parking spaces; and public spaces such as a pedestrian street, urban maple forest, public squares and greenbelts. Sustainability features include an energy loop targeted to be 40 pct more efficient than the ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010 and a collection system that reuses 95 pct of rainwater. (Source: Societe de developpement Angus , Daily Commercial News, 15 Oct., 2018) Contact: Societe de developpement Angus https://sda-angus.com

    More Low-Carbon Energy News LEED ,  USGBC,  Energy Efficiency,  


    Alaska Energy Audit Program Extended (Ind. Report)
    Alaska Energy Authority
    Date: 2018-08-03
    In Anchorage, the Alaska Energy Authority (AEA) reports it has extended the open application period for the USDA-funded Commercial Building Energy Audit program for commercially owned buildings located in rural Alaska i.e., outside of the Municipality of Anchorage. The new deadline is Sept. 30, 2018.

    According to the AEA, nonresidential buildings consume more than half the building energy use in Alaska, and the majority of these buildings are privately owned. The Commercial Building Energy Audit program is designed to pay up to 75 pct of the cost of an ASHRAE level 1+ energy audit performed on privately owned commercial buildings. The audit cost is set by the building size and ranges from $600 for buildings up to 3,000 square feet up to $2,100 for buildings over 20,000 square feet.

    The AEA reports that results of past similar programs indicate average energy savings of roughly 1/3 resulting from economic efficiency investments with average simple paybacks of just over six years. (Source: Alaska Energy Authority , The News, 2 Aug., 2018) Contact; Alaska Energy Efficiency Map, www.akenergyefficiencymap.org, Alaska Energy Authority, (888) 300-8534, www.akenergyauthority.org

    More Low-Carbon Energy News Energy Efficiency news,  

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