ASHRAE Might Get Involved in Residential

September 12, 2014 By Linda Hardesty

ashraeASHRAE is exploring its role in residential, looking at how it can contribute most effectively to the improvement of the performance of residential buildings. The Society recently released a report, “ASHRAE and the Residential Construction Market,” which contains a series of recommendations to its board of directors.

The first recommendation is that ASHRAE establish a new standing committee on residential buildings. Consideration should be given to defining explicit roles (either as committee member or advisory panels) for specific stakeholder classes, such as large builders, and to facilitating stakeholder input, such as through workshops.

The committee should function as the Environmental Health Committee once did in bringing expertise into ASHRAE that did not otherwise participate, as well as prioritizing, enhancing, and coordinating activities under its purview, says the report.

The standards group says the residential sector consumes a fifth of all the primary energy used by the United States (21 percent) and more than half (54 percent) of all energy used by buildings. Over 74 percent of all existing homes in the United States were constructed before 1989—before widespread adoption of model energy codes governing their construction.

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