A spate of new energy-conservation measures has been introduced over the course of the last several years. One net result of all increasingly stringent code, as well as voluntary rating systems, like the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED®, is that energy efficiency is a top priority for just about every organization. That collective energy-efficiency consciousness has been building during the last 10 or 15 years, and as a result, facility executives think about how to save kilowatt-hours in any way possible, including getting better insulation value out of their roof assembly.
But 2012 is a watershed year for new codes, updated guidelines, and tougher certification processes. The fact that many of the changes in code emphasize energy efficiency, means building owners need to consider every aspect of a roof system to maximize performance.
Barry Reid, sustainability and product manager for Georgia-Pacific Gypsum, says that perhaps the most significant changes are those prescribed in the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), which call for buildings to achieve a 30 percent increase in energy efficiencies over the 2006 IECC edition.
Commercial building requirements under a revamped International Code Council specify energy efficiency for windows, doors, skylights and the building envelope, plus increased efficiencies for installed HVAC equipment.