Efforts to remove permanent shading as a mandatory minimum requirement, as well as ones that would encourage the use of dynamic glazing were heard today as part of the 2011 International Green Construction Code hearings taking place this week at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel. A number of the proposals, including GEW 128 and 129 relate to glass and glazing elements.

GEW 128, proposed by Jeff Inks, representing the Window and Door Manufacturers Association and Garrett Stone of Brickfield Burchette Ritts & Stone, representing Cardinal Glass Industries, urged removal of the mandatory minimum requirement of permanent shading devices. Though the proposal was met with opposition from some in the glass industry, the motion ultimately was approved.

In the proposal, Inks noted, “Permanent shading is not a prescriptive attribute that can be applied under a one size fits all approach as proposed. There are too many factors that must be considered beyond simple orientation and that cannot be addressed in exceptions for this to be a sound prescriptive requirement and implemented correctly. Furthermore, mandating it is not necessary to achieving the energy efficiency objectives of the IGCC. Forcing it as a prescriptive requirement could easily result in the misapplication of it and increased energy use beyond the intended targets if not done correctly.

Stone also noted in the proposal, “While permanent shading devices may provide benefits in certain situations, it is inappropriate to require these devices across the board, on every building and every fenestration product facing certain directions when less expensive options, such as lower SHGC fenestration, is also available … Builders and architects under the IGCC should have the option under all compliance paths of providing the appropriate shading through permanent shading devices or fenestration with the appropriate SHGC.”

Tom Culp, representing the Glazing Industry Code Committee, spoke in opposition.

“Shading has been known for millennia as a good building practice, so why would we not want to support that. It’s a good building practice that should be encouraged,” he said.

Speaking on behalf of Pilkington North America, Thom Zaremba added, “From a building construction practice projection features are a means to control solar heat gain coefficients …” He added they are a good, solid building practice and “are not going away.”

GEW 129 was proposed by Dr. Helen Sanders, SAGE Electrochromics Inc. and would have allowed for the use of dynamic glazing as an exception to permanent shading devices, had they not been removed per GEW 128.

Still, many spoke out in support of dynamic glazing.

“This is an opportunity for the committee to create and drive a market for a product that’s got to be one of the greenest on the market,” said Zaremba.

Culp agreed, saying it’s a technology that supports the path toward zero energy buildings.

While even some on the committee spoke in favor of dynamic glazing, they noted that given the removal of GEW 128, a motion was made and carried to disapprove GEW 129.

The IGCC hearings run through Sunday, May 22. Stay tuned to dwmmag.com™ for more updates as they are made available.


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