Energy Efficiency Standards for Federal Buildings

Commercial

Current Standard

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has published final rule 10 CFR 433: Energy Efficiency Design Standards for New Federal Commercial and Multi-Family High-Rise Residential Buildings (July 9, 2013) to implement provisions in the Energy Conservation and Production Act (ECPA) that require DOE to update the baseline federal energy efficiency performance standards for the construction of new federal commercial and multi-family high-rise residential buildings. This rule updates the baseline federal commercial standard to ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010, effective September 9, 2013.

The scope of the new standard comprehensively covers the Building Envelope, HVAC, Service Water Heating, Power, Lighting, and other equipment for different climate zones. The most significant changes included in the new standard are the following:

  • Expanded scope to cover receptacles and process loads.
  • Increased stringency in building envelope (opaque elements and fenestration) requirements and continuous air barrier and albedo roof requirements have been added.
  • Lowered interior lighting power densities, additional occupant sensing controls and mandatory day lighting requirements, and a new five-zone exterior lighting power density table were added.
  • Higher equipment efficiencies; more requirements for energy recovery, economizers, and more energy-conserving controls.
  • Clarification in and expansion of modeling requirements.

After a regulatory action has been issued, Section 6(a)(3)(E) of Executive Order (EO) 12866 requires agencies to identify in a complete, clear, and simple manner, the substantive changes between the draft submitted to The Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review and the action subsequently announced, and identify those changes in the regulatory action that were made at the suggestion or recommendation of OIRA. This OMB compare document is intended to comply with this requirement.

Previous Standard

DOE previously updated the requirements for energy efficiency in newly constructed federal buildings. The rule, 10 CFR 433: Energy Efficiency Standards for the Design and Construction of New Federal Commercial and Multi-family High Rise Residential Buildings applied to both commercial and multi-family residential buildings four or more stories in height for which design for construction began on or after August 10, 2012.

The rule updated the baseline standard in 10 CFR 433 to ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007. New federal commercial buildings were required (effective August 10, 2012) to achieve the ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007 level of energy efficiency or 30% greater than Standard 90.1-2007 when doing so was cost-effective within the lifecycle of the building. If the additional 30% savings was not cost-effective, an agency had to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of alternate designs at successive decrements below 30% (e.g., 25%, 20%) to identify the most cost-effective design for that building. Life-cycle cost effectiveness is established using the methodology defined in10 CFR Part 436, Subpart A. The rule did not change the existing requirement that buildings for which design for construction began on or after January 3, 2007, but before August 10, 2012, are required to comply with ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2004 or 30% better than ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2004, if life-cycle cost-effective.

After a regulatory action has been issued, Section 6(a)(3)(E) of Executive Order (EO) 12866 requires agencies to identify in a complete, clear, and simple manner, the substantive changes between the draft submitted to The Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review and the action subsequently announced, and identify those changes in the regulatory action that were made at the suggestion or recommendation of OIRA. This OMB compare document is intended to comply with this requirement.

Residential

DOE recently updated the requirements for energy efficiency in newly constructed federal buildings. The new rule, 10 CFR 435, Subpart A: Energy Efficiency Standards for New Federal Low-Rise Residential Buildings, applies to residential buildings (one- and two-family dwellings as well as multifamily buildings three stories or less in height) for which design for construction began on or after August 10, 2012.

The rule updates the baseline standard in 10 CFR 435, Subpart A to the 2009 IECC. New federal residential buildings are required (effective August 10, 2012) to achieve the 2009 IECC level of energy efficiency or 30% greater than the 2009 IECC when doing so is cost-effective within the lifecycle of the building. If the additional 30% savings is not cost-effective, an agency must evaluate the cost-effectiveness of alternate designs at successive decrements below 30% (e.g., 25%, 20%) to identify the most cost-effective design for that building. Lifecycle cost-effectiveness is to be established using the methodology defined in 10 CFR Part 436, Subpart A. The rule does not change the existing requirement that buildings for which design for construction began on or after January 3, 2007, but before August 10, 2012, are required to comply with the 2004 IECC or 30% better than the 2004 IECC, if life-cycle cost-effective.

After a regulatory action has been issued, Section 6(a)(3)(E) of EO 12866 requires agencies to identify in a complete, clear, and simple manner, the substantive changes between the draft submitted to The Office of Management and Budget's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review and the action subsequently announced, and identify those changes in the regulatory action that were made at the suggestion or recommendation of OIRA. This OMB compare document is intended to comply with this requirement.

Federal Building Codes – Ongoing Rulemakings

Sustainable Design Notice of Proposed Rulemaking — This proposed rule, published May 28, 2010, is based on the sustainable design requirements in Section 109 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and Sections 433 and 523 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. The proposed rulemaking would require that new federal buildings and major renovations of existing federal buildings use sustainable design principles for siting, design, and construction to the extent lifecycle cost-effective and that some new federal buildings and major renovations to existing federal buildings use sustainable design principles for siting, design, and construction to the extent practicable. The proposed rulemaking also would require that new federal buildings or major renovations of existing federal buildings achieve 30% of their hot water demand with solar energy, if lifecycle cost-effective. More information on the public meeting and public comments received on this notice of proposed rulemaking may be found on the Federal Energy Management Program website.

Fossil-Fuel-Based Energy Consumption Reduction Notice of Proposed Rulemaking — This proposed rule, published October 15, 2010, is based on the fossil-fuel-based energy consumption reduction requirements of Section 433 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. The proposed rulemaking would require some new federal buildings and major renovations to existing federal buildings to meet fossil fuel-based energy consumption targets based on specified reductions from the consumption of typical buildings in the 2003 Commercial Building Energy Conservation Survey and the 2005 Residential Energy Consumption Survey. More information on the public meeting and public comments received on this notice of proposed rulemaking may be found on the Federal Energy Management Program website.

FEMP Training Webcasts

The Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) will be developing new training webcasts for Federal building energy efficiency standards and life cycle costing in support of those standards in FY2014.

FEMP presented a seven-part webcast series in 2008 to help federal agencies comply with the federal building energy efficiency requirements in place at that time. Many of the webcasts previously presented are still applicable under the new rule. Visit the BECP Training Catalog to view webcasts and access associated handouts and videos for the following topics: