Some Controversial Provisions of 2024 IECC are Changed on Appeal | Building Contractors Association of Southwestern Idaho | Boise, Nampa, Caldwell, Idaho | Treasure Valley
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Some Controversial Provisions of 2024 IECC are Changed on Appeal

The International Code Council (ICC) announced last week the results of the appeals process for changes to the 2024 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), which sets energy efficiency standards for residential and commercial buildings.

The appeals process ended three years of consensus committees’ work of reviewing and balloting hundreds of proposed changes. Appeals are a final step in any code development process to make sure the work product of the committees aligns with the direction and procedures established by ICC.

The ICC Board of Directors determined that the scope and intent governing the 2024 IECC do not support the inclusion of measures in the main body of the code if the measures did not directly affect building energy conservation.

Based on this interpretation, the Board resolved that several challenged provisions viewed as concerning greenhouse gas reduction and not building energy conservation be removed from within the base of the 2024 IECC codes and placed in appendices to accompany the codes.

The affected provisions moved to an appendix include:

  • Electric vehicle charging infrastructure in both residential and commercial buildings (Sections C405.14, R404.7, and N1104.7)
  • Solar readiness provisions in residential buildings (Sections R404.6 and N1104.6)
  • Electric readiness provisions for electric cooking, clothes drying and water heating (Sections R404.5 and N1104.5)
  • Penalty for using natural gas for space or water heating in commercial buildings (Sections C406.1.1.1 and C502.3.7.1)
  • Electrical energy storage system readiness in commercial buildings (Section C405.16)

(Note: Multifamily buildings four stories and higher are regulated by the commercial energy code provisions; all other residential buildings are regulated by the residential energy code provisions.)

By moving the provisions to appendices, jurisdictions can still adopt them if they choose, but the provisions will not be a part of the base code and will need a separate adoption decision to be added.

The Board also considered concerns voiced by industry stakeholders that provisions in the draft IECC codes were federally preempted by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act. Where the Board determined there was a significant risk of preemption based on case law or the Board had concerns about the ability to comply with provisions using federal minimum efficiency equipment, the Board decided to move those provisions to a resource or add a cautionary note regarding the risk of preemption.

Affected provisions include:

  • All-electric provisions for commercial buildings (Appendix CG) and all-electric provisions for residential building (Appendix RE) moved to a resource because of significant risk of preemption based on case law.
  • Prescriptive glide path to net zero for commercial buildings (Appendix CD Section CD101.1 and Table CD101.1) moved to a resource because of significant risk of preemption based on an inability to comply with minimum efficiency equipment.
  • Glide path to net zero for residential buildings (Appendix RG) retained as an appendix with a cautionary note regarding the limited compliance options for minimum efficiency equipment in specific climate zones.

With the appeals process finished, ICC is expected to publish the 2024 IECC soon. Staff will work to highlight significant changes in the coming weeks.

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