Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Seriously Interesting Coalition

On Wednesday I sat in on an open forum meeting of the Advanced Building Coalition. It was an amazingly diverse group of people. You had of course protectors of the industry there (GANA) along with primary glass manufacturers and 2/3rds of the top fabricators. Then you had code officials, government officials (DOE and HUD), and plenty of energy related groups. Plus you had non glazing folks too so it really made for an interesting meeting. The theme of the meeting was how to approach the governments plan to reduce energy in buildings by 30% by 2010 and 50% by 2020. 11 people representing every background imaginable gave short presentations and thoughts on what could/may/possibly happen when this 30% goal becomes law/code.

To me the most interesting take came from Todd Taylor of the Professional Northwest National Laboratory. He noted that getting to 30% is not as simple as people think because there are so many factors that need to be addressed. He noted regional differences, building differences, fuel types and non code regulated items among the many reasons on why this effort will take time to muster. But that said, the DOE representative on the panel was pretty focused on the fact that this will happen and according to a surprising Memo of Understanding that was released today from 4 organizations (ICC, AIA, Alliance to Save Energy and ASHRAE) the drive to get it done could be there. Long way to go, but energy focus and code advancements are surely coming, so get ready. I’m going to write more on this meeting either later this week or next.


-- Also from the meeting, the DOE rep, a pretty engaging guy Ron Majette, had few fascinating comments- but the best was:

“You are the experts, you are the pulse in the field….” Yes we are, can you pass that on to the fine folks at the NFRC…. They’ll ignore you, but it sure would be nice if someone from DOE would tell them that instead of listening to NFRC tell you how we’re all evil greedy manufacturers who hate things like Low E.

-- Mr. Majette and many others also talked about how costs will go up in order to meet the energy goals… because of higher end, better products…. So again that brings me to our pals at NFRC… if their program is expensive, and you know it will be, how will that impact the goals of the government? You know its one thing to pay more for product, its surely another to have to pay a ransom to have a professionally produced product tested, re-tested and vetted, so some people can make profit. Now more than ever, with this on the horizon, I believe that NFRC’s CMA effort will fail miserably unless it becomes a ton more user friendly, less invasive and surely less expensive.

-- While I am on subjects that make me nuts… did you see that China led the world in exporting glass…. 1 BILLION worth…. For which they probably sold on the market for 400 million…. Or less. But the article on USGNN (CLICK HERE) has some great points, especially made by Russ Ebeid of Guardian.

-- Speaking of Guardian… if you have not seen their new Sun Guard website (CLICK HERE) then you are missing out. Fantastic site, extremely informative and detailed. And yes while I’ll be accused of drinking the Guardian Kool Aid, I have to compliment because if you have worked on a website, you know it’s A LOT harder than it looks, so I have to give proper kudos to the folks behind it, because it’s simply tremendous. Congrats guys.

-- And no, I am not on their payroll.

-- Football picks have been ugly.. like I warned at the start of the season… that’s why they call me MUSH…. This week… I’m going with a favorite for the first time in a while.. Tampa Bay by 4 over a Jacksonville team starting a horrible QB…. So let’s see if I can right the ship.

Video of the week… Bowling with a football flair…

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