As of July 1, California’s new energy code – the 2016 Building Energy Efficiency Standards (Title 24, Part 6) – is officially open for adoption by local governments across the state. Last quarter we shared some statistics from the energy code press release, and some high level information on what to expect. Thanks to resources like Energy Code Ace, resources from the California Energy Commission (CEC), and the Bay Area Regional Energy Network, here are some additional highlights:
- The new energy code provides some allowances and flexibility that 2013 code did not – including a new and easier path for non-residential lighting compliance.
- Screw-based lighting sockets are now recognized as high-efficacy – meaning that in many cases replacing all screw-based fixtures with LED will make your project lighting compliant.
- Instantaneous water heating is now the baseline (with a required isolation valve for period flushing).
- High performance attics are a new requirement.
- Direct digital controls (DDC) is now mandatory in buildings with more than 3 zones/300,000 BTU
- Free software for modeling different scenarios is available now on the CEC’s website for both residential and non-residential. CBECC and EnergyPro are both approved and available for 2016; Wrightsoft Right-Energy is also available for residential.
Here are some of our favorite resources:
- The full 2016 Building Energy Efficiency Standards;
- The “Reference Ace” tool from Energy Code Ace, which provides navigation for the full Standards;
- Easy-to-read fact sheet summaries on What’s New for Residential and Non-Residential from Energy Code Ace;
- And for inspiration: this study from UC Berkeley showing how dollars spent investing in compliance efforts end up saving government dollars
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