http://www.cleanenergy.org/building-codes-and-appliance-standards/

SACE | Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

Building Codes and Appliance Standards

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Energy EfficiencyEnergy Efficiency Building Codes and Appliance Standards

When big investments are made, most individuals and companies focus on the price tag – not the future operating energy cost. Energy efficiency building codes and appliance standards ensure that products that waste energy are driven out of the market, so that more cost-effective choices are made.

Energy efficiency building codes ensure that construction practices keep pace with the latest opportunities to cut energy bills. Energy efficiency appliance standards keep energy wasting products out of the marketplace.

While codes and standards provide a “floor” to ensure that homes and energy-using products are at least reasonably efficient users of energy, the US DOE ENERGY STAR Program helps customers find products that meet high standards.

Impacts

Energy efficiency is the cheapest solution to our energy and global warming challenges. Leading energy efficiency programs across the country deliver energy savings at a cost of 2 to 4 cents per kilowatt-hour to customers. In contrast, new power plants commonly cost at least 10 cents per kilowatt-hour.

Unlike conventional power sources, energy efficiency isn’t sensitive to price spikes because it doesn’t require fuel. Also, because it doesn’t require fuel, it reduces global warming pollution by 100%.

Solutions

One of the easiest things an individual can do to help cut global warming pollution is to choose ENERGY STAR products if available, including new homes (which can be certified to ENERGY STAR, LEED or other similar standards). If a leading product isn’t available to meet your needs, you can simply confirm that your building meets the energy efficiency code or your appliance choice meets current standard.

Across the Southeast, states should adopt the latest energy efficiency building codes and should identify appliance standards that can be enacted at the state level . (Many, but not nearly all, appliance standards are enacted by the federal government. In some cases, federal standards can be supplemented with more aggressive state standards. Building energy efficiency ratings, such as Florida’s ratings system, are important to helping customers make informed choices.

What SACE is doing

The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is fostering the implementation of new energy efficiency building codes, industrial equipment efficiency standards and appliance standards in our Southeast states and in Congress.