Leveraging State Energy Office-Utility Partnerships to Advance Building Energy Codes
Friday, June 1, 2012
In December 2011, the NASEO Board of Directors adopted a resolution encouraging State Energy Offices (SEOs) and utility commissions to create opportunities for utilities to incorporate building energy code programs into energy efficiency portfolios and resource planning. In order to address the need expressed by NASEO members, NASEO conducted several months of research on current and potential approaches to SEO-utility collaboration on building energy codes.
This report serves as a resource to SEOs and utilities as they work to strengthen or develop partnerships on building energy codes. The report illustrates successes and lessons learned from several existing SEO and utility building energy codes programs. Additionally, the report offers recommendations for how SEOs and utilities can collaborate on building code adoption, implementation, and compliance.
Key findings from the report include:
- SEO-utility collaboration on building energy code programs and activities cover a wide spectrum across different states. States have developed a variety of approaches in order to meet their needs, budgets, capacity, and energy code status.
- Examples of SEO-utility partnerships on building energy codes include training programs, stretch code initiatives, stakeholder engagement processes, and SEO oversight or monitoring of utility energy efficiency programs.
- As SEOs work to strengthen or develop partnerships with utilities around building energy codes, NASEO recommends the following:
- Demonstrate the value of building energy codes to utilities as a key first step;
- Recognize and highlight the different ways utilities can provide support and resources. In addition to direct funding support, utilities can also provide important data on consumer energy use and new construction trends, utilize their political and social capital with key stakeholder groups, host code trainings, and distribute code books; and
- SEOs and utilities should continue to work closely with state and local code adoption and enforcement officials, as this collaboration helps ensure state resources are effectively leveraged to improve code adoption and compliance.
The full report and four case studies on SEO and utility involvement in building energy code programs are provided below. NASEO will continue seek out opportunities to work SEOs on codes and help facilitate increased SEO-utility collaboration on building energy codes. NASEO members are encouraged to contact their peers in other states or NASEO staff if they would like to learn more about any of the programs highlighted in the report.
- NASEO Report: Leveraging State Energy Office-Utility Partnerships to Advance Building Energy Codes
- Report Executive Summary
- Case Studies on Utility Involvement in Building Energy Code Programs
- Arizona Case Study: Utilities and SEO Promote Training and Adoption in Home Rule State
- Georgia Case Study: SEO and Utility Support Adoption of 2009 IECC and Testing Requirements
- Iowa Case Study: Above Code Program Implemented by Three Utilities
- Washington Case Study: Utility Code Group Helps Inform Other States
Please contact Chris Wagner (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions or feedback.