Update:  For a rundown of green building provisions in the stimulus pacakge, see this post.

On Monday, we highlighted some green building strategies that might be incorporated in the Obama Administration’s proposed stimulus program.  The Alliance to Save Energy, Edison Electric Institute, Energy Future Coalition and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) recently published a comprehensive Energy Efficiency Initiative to be included in the proposed stimulus plan.  You should read the letter yourself but here is a good summary from NRDC’s Peter Lehner:

The proposal we put together would invest approximately $33 billion for greater energy efficiency. . . . One of our primary recommendations is to make grants available to states and local governments giving them a huge incentive to increase efficiency. Under this program, states would provide funding under the grants program to entities such as utilities, cooperatives, energy service companies and school districts.

The grants would fall into the following broad categories: home energy efficiency retrofits, retrofits of public buildings, commercial building efficiency retrofits and efficiency programs matching fund. 

The Initiative’s plan to allocate the state grants is particularly intriguing.  The first half of the funding would be allocated without conditions.  The second half of the funding would be tied to, in part, a state adopting and implementing more stringent energy building codes: 2009 IECC (for residential buildings) and the ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007 (for commercial buildings).

If the stimulus package includes any or all of these proposals, the impacts on the green building and construction industry would be enormous.  In a few short years, we would simultaneously see huge government investments in green building strategies to improve energy efficiency while states simultaneously adopt building codes that will force private projects to include new green building techniques and technologies. 

If you are in the construction or green building industry, you better pay attention to the details of the final stimulus package. 

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Photo:  Kimberlyfaye