The View From Here

Take Action Now: Saving the SAVE Act Could Benefit You

Feb 1st, 2016

As I write this blog, I’m also writing to Quanex’s senators asking them to support the Sensible Accounting to Value Energy (SAVE) Act Amendment as part of a larger energy bill. The amendment could be voted on at any time, so we have to act quickly—and it only takes a few minutes! How will this […]

DOE Field Study Yields Some Surprises for Window Industry

Jan 25th, 2016

In the past, I’ve heard it said that just getting all the states to adopt the IECC (International Energy Conservation Code) and enforce code requirements would result in significant energy savings. Thanks to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), we’re getting a chance to test that theory. The results might be surprising to some. The […]

Will Return of 25C Tax Credits Make an Impact?

Jan 11th, 2016

Federal tax credits are a thing of the past – or so I thought. On Dec. 18, 2015, Congress raised a few eyebrows, including my own, when it passed the PATH Act (H.R. 2029). When the bill (S185) was introduced in January 2015 by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), there was no energy-savings incentive for doors and windows. […]

The Pros and Cons of H.R. 8

Dec 21st, 2015

The good news? On Dec. 3, an energy bill passed in the House with wide Republican support. The bad news? It really does nothing to improve energy efficiency, which does not bode well for manufacturers of energy-efficient building products. You see, H.R. 8, which passed the Energy and Commerce Committee subpanel over the summer, now […]

Education Breeds Opportunity for the Fenestration Industry

Dec 7th, 2015

Dodge Data & Analytics’ World Green Building Trends 2016 Report reveals that green building is doubling every three years worldwide. This speedy rate of adoption can be attributed to many factors, but the top reason might surprise some of you. The survey, which included responses from 1,000 architects, engineers, contractors, owners, specialists and consultants in […]

Years Later, ARRA Tax Credits Showing Positive Payback

Nov 16th, 2015

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) caused some controversy in the fenestration business when it was launched in 2009. How did they come up with the performance numbers? Why are all climates and regions being treated the same? Will such a large investment make an impact in the long term? In some ways, it […]

Green Building: The Value Beyond Operating Costs

Nov 2nd, 2015

In previous blogs I have written that the DOE and EPA are actively seeking data on energy-efficient building upgrades in manufacturing and commercial real estate, but the focus has predominately been on building operating costs. Until now. A recent – and compelling – study published in the September 2015 issue of the Journal of Portfolio […]

The State of Energy Efficiency Incentives

Oct 19th, 2015

When marketed correctly, incentives for energy-efficient home improvements have the power to move consumers off the fence and into buying mode. We’ve seen them do wonders in the past for our industry, but what does the future hold? On the federal level, residential tax credits are difficult to predict year-to-year with decisions being made by […]

After Nine Months, A 3-D Printed Home is Born

Oct 5th, 2015

Back in April, I visited Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) for a presentation on “Additive Manufacturing,” also known as 3-D printing. ORNL was proudly showing off its newest 3-D printing machine featuring a bed big enough to print a small house – and guess what? They did. 3-D printing is not new and has been […]

DOE Technology Review: 400-Plus Pages at-a-Glance

Sep 28th, 2015

You are busy with sales calls, continuous improvement initiatives and seeking opportunities to grow your business. You probably don’t have the time to read 400+ pages from the DOE’s Quadrennial Technology Review of energy technologies and research opportunities. So I’m going to break down a few of the highlights and points that have the greatest […]