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Re: ICC Green Building Code

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On Jul 14, 2009, at 1:23 PM, Timothy Hilton wrote:

Insults aside, what about the construction concerns in his email?
Minnesota has had a related mechanical Code (called an 'Energy Code') for a number of years. Energy efficiency is probably the chief point of the code, since energy costs here are important factors. But there are others involving air quality and appropriate ventilation along with energy usage. For a while the big thing here was making houses airtight to keep outside air outside, but it wasn't long before homes, especially newer homes were having problems with carbon monoxide and moisture retention. when a house is too tight air quality suffers mold accumulates and gas appliances and furnaces start having combustion problems when the interior pressure was reduced because there was no way to supply fresh combustion. Lots of cases of expensive new housing that was uninhabitable because of mold resulting from moisture retention. That's serious damn business.

And of course there were the usual problems with builders using energy efficiency to sell houses that weren't truly energy efficient because there wasn't a standard for it. There was a lot of whining and complaining from builders (except for the good ones) about the code and how much it was going to affect costs and how they'd always done fine before, but it seems to have worked. It also provides a baseline for weatherizing performance in older houses which is a big money saving, for the utilities and for people who live in (and prefer) older houses.

As for the goofy looking fluorescent light bulbs, they make a huge amount of real engineering sense. We started replacing old incandescent bulbs with fluorescents. I think we've had the new kitchen fixtures around 10 years with the original lamps still working. Same in my office--two desk light replacements in 20 years. They save real money, goofy or not.

Christopher Wright P.E. |"They couldn't hit an elephant at
chrisw(--nospam--at)   | this distance" (last words of Gen.
.......................................| John Sedgwick, Spotsylvania 1864)

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