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Indoor AirPlus Version 2: What Changes Are Coming? [Updated]

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began revising its Indoor AirPlus (IAP) specification for homes and residential buildings in early 2020. Since the first drafts of version 2, several factors have shaped the new standard, including the public’s hyper-awareness of indoor air quality (IAQ) during and post COVID, input from strategic partners, and considerations from multiple public comments.

The goal to improve IAQ across new and existing housing while addressing affordability and expanding access to healthy housing among disadvantaged populations will not change.

But a lot will change for building designers, developers, owners, and property managers that earn the Indoor AirPlus label for their buildings.

For starters, the program will now be written as Indoor AirPlus (previously “airPLUS”), and there are two levels of certification: Certified and Gold. EPA anticipates that version 2 will be available for use in fall 2024, and version 1 will be sunset in January 2026. During this overlap period, partners may opt to use either version.

Below, we’ve summarized the changes to expect from Indoor AirPlus version 2. (more…)

NYC Building Energy Efficiency Letter Grades: What Owners & Property Managers Need to Know

New York City buildings over 25,000 square feet must display a Building Energy Efficiency Rating Label, as required by Local Law 33 of 2018 and Local Law 95 of 2019.

Each year, buildings are given new energy efficiency grades based on benchmarking data from the previous calendar year.

New labels are available to building owners every year on October 1. Labels must be downloaded and posted in the lobby of each building by October 31. Failure to display the label by this deadline will result in a violation from the Department of Buildings and fine of $1,250 for applicable buildings.

Keep reading to get answers to all your questions about New York City’s building energy efficiency letter grades and labels from our energy experts. (more…)

Choose Your Adventure: Constructing New vs. Adapting Old

Carbon emissions from new construction graphTo meet the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, we must make decisions that will result in the greatest near-term carbon savings. This means taking into account both embodied carbon—those upfront emissions associated with the extraction, manufacture, transportation, and assembly of building materials—as well as the carbon that’s emitted over the course of the building’s operational phase.

We can build a high-performance building with very low operational emissions, but if its embodied emissions are so high that even if it’s a net-zero energy building (meaning it has net-zero operational energy consumption) it would take decades for the building to reach net-zero carbon (meaning it has net zero whole-building lifetime carbon emissions), we’re not actually helping to solve the critical issue of near-term carbon.


ENERGY STAR New Construction Certification Programs for Multifamily to be Combined

ENERGY STAR MF LogoCurrently, to receive ENERGY STAR® certification for multifamily new construction, you would get your certification through the ENERGY STAR Certified Homes program or the ENERGY STAR Multifamily High Rise program. This may change by early 2020. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in a recent statement, multifamily will soon have a single program, rather than splitting them across the Certified Homes program and the Multifamily High Rise program.

“To better serve the multifamily sector, EPA is in the process of creating a single ENERGY STAR multifamily program by merging the current requirements and adopting the most appropriate from each.”


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