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Issue Summaries

 ASHRAE Standards 

Background

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) develops standards for buildings and equipment that are of major importance in the U.S. building industry. For example, ASHRAE Standard 90.1, “Energy Efficiency in Commercial and High-Rise Residential Buildings,” is considered as the basis for federal energy efficiency requirements for buildings under the Energy Policy Act of 1992.

AGA is currently active on four major ASHRAE standards addressing energy efficiency, and ventilation and indoor air quality. In addition to the energy-efficiency standard 90.1 discussed in the paragraph above, AGA is represented on the committee for ASHRAE Standard 90.2, “Energy Efficient Design of New Low-Rise Residential Buildings.” In the area of ventilation and indoor air quality, AGA is active in ASHRAE standards committee meetings and public review of proposals to ASHRAE Standard 62.1, “Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality” covering commercial and high-rise residential buildings and Standard 62.2, “Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Air Quality in Low-Rise Residential Buildings,” a new standard for residential buildings. AGA is also active in technical committee activities supporting the standards, and is organizing natural gas utility participation in the standards process.

AGA Viewpoint

Standards activities at ASHRAE can represent critical threats and opportunities for the competitiveness of natural gas as an end-use fuel. Energy efficiency requirements in ASHRAE standards, promulgated under federal statute or through model energy codes, can affect the advantages of natural gas for both consumers and builders by increasing equipment costs and installation costs for natural gas applications. Ventilation standards can place undue restrictions on natural gas applications, and present conflicts with other consensus codes and standards.

AGA is working within the ASHRAE process and the consensus standards organizations, including the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), to avoid the development of ASHRAE standards that would reduce the competitive advantages of natural gas. Through these efforts, AGA seeks to facilitate the continued growth of natural gas use in residential and commercial buildings, and expand the public benefits of reduced energy consumption over the full fuel cycle, and reduced greenhouse gas and air pollutant emissions.

AGA Contact: Jim Ranfone, (202) 824-7310, jranfone@aga.org

 
 

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