August 6th, 2012
Weighing in on the New Energy Star Draft
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the new draft proposal for Energy Star in 2014. In my opinion, the “biggest” news about the draft is having a U-value of a .27 for northern climates. Having worked with the EPA and the Department of Energy (DOE) for many years, there has been a strong emphasis on trying to create a ‘Super Window’ category. According to the people I spoke to at these agencies, they really want Energy Star to become more exclusive in terms of labeling. This may very well be part of their ‘Most Efficient’ program they have for other products.
However, based on the new draft, I would say there has been a shift away from this ‘Super Window’ program being the sole measuring category. I also hope that Energy Star is looking to be more inclusive with their labeling rather than less. Consumers look towards the Energy Star label as a measuring stick of whether a window is energy efficient or not. My belief of moving away from this methodology and only labeling the top 5 percent of energy efficient windows, as was discussed with me 12-18 months ago, would be a mistake.
Also, I do believe it is up to our industry to constantly look to improve the energy efficiency of our windows and bring them to the marketplace as competitively as possible. I know of many competitors and glass companies that are already experimenting with the ‘next generation’ of glass products. Over the next several years, there are going to be some exciting developments with glass and our industry will be on the forefront of introducing these new glass technologies.
But getting back to the Energy Star draft, I strongly encourage everyone to weigh in with feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org . We have until September 28, to provide thoughts and opinions on the new proposal. This is a great forum to have your voice heard and I would also say this is probably why the U-value proposals in the Northern Climate were adjusted from a .25 to a .27.
I am curious of your thoughts and comments on the new draft. Do you like the U-value adjustment? Would you like to see it higher or lower? What about the air infiltration criteria? Please share your comments with us by posting a comment here.