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Grassroots Government Affairs

Grassroots Government Activities Committee (GGAC) exists to support cooperation with like-minded organizations and to work with community policymakers to promote ASHRAE members’ technical expertise – as well as the use of ASHRAE standards – and to advance ASHRAE’s public policy aims.

GGAC March Update

ASHRAE Grassroots Government Activities Committee (GGAC) Update

David Palty, GGAC Chairman, ASHRAE Tucson Chapter


House of Representatives Potential Vote on S.B. 1241 – YOUR OPINION COUNTS

Below is the note that ASHRAE sent out to House of Representative members earlier today regarding Benchmarking, etc.


Background Information:

A house bill in Arizona has been submitted to prevent local municipalities from adopting benchmarking ordinances.  The bill is SB1241 and contains the new language at


If you are interested in supporting benchmarking and disclosure and have contacts in Arizona we suggest they contact their representatives and voice opinions.

If you have an opinion … please communicate it to your local House of Representatives legislator:

Heather Carter


Jay Lawrence



Michelle Ugenti


Kate Brophy McGee



XXXX  ASHRAE – Tucson Chapter Letter to All Arizona House of Representatives Members XXXX

The Arizona Chapters of ASHRAE believe that Building Energy Data is important for Arizona’s future. 

1.       A quick summary is provided below on Building Energy Data but measuring and reporting energy usage and consumption, including energy consumption benchmarking is a critical resource in Arizona. 

2.       Future utilization of this data will be important for making future decisions on local and state building efficiency codes, bills and statutes.

3.       Local and national ASHRAE members would be happy to discuss Building Energy Data, Benchmarking and other Building Efficiency topics with you or your staff.

4.       I included a short summary on the Development of ASHRAE’s Standard on High Performance Green Buildings to give you a flavor of the comprehensive and exhaustive detail that goes into to developing ASHRAE Standards which are often adopted into code by local municipalities.



Reducing the energy use of buildings requires the availability of a robust database of building energy data to define the baseline against which progress can be measured. Because buildings account for approximately 40 percent of U.S. energy use1 and about 74 percent of U.S. electricity consumption, they can be a significant source to reduce energy use. However, limited data exist to actually understand the energy use associated with individual buildings and the factors that affect that energy use. Despite increased focus on improving the ability for all new buildings to use energy more efficiently, existing buildings represent the greatest source of energy use within the sector, and when initially occupied, new buildings become existing buildings. Better understanding of the energy use characteristics of existing buildings will clarify the relationship between intended and actual performance. Understanding these gaps can result in better building design, inform operations and maintenance practices, and provide input to energy codes and standards that establish design and construction criteria for new and renovations and additions to existing buildings.  


ASHRAE’S ROLE  - As a technical society whose priorities include reducing the energy use of buildings, ASHRAE has the resources and expertise to guide the development of more energy efficient buildings. ASHRAE disseminates best practices to professionals across the building sector by developing standards, guidance, and educational resources. However, those best practices must be informed by robust data on the actual energy performance of buildings. To help building owners and operators understand the energy use of their buildings and opportunities for improvement, ASHRAE has developed a building performance and building energy labeling program (the Building Energy Quotient) that requires valid data across building types and climate zones, and has updated its Standard 105, which addresses measuring and expressing building energy performance.



The newly expanded committee tasked with writing the nation’s first standard on high-performing green buildings has begun work again. The committee for proposed Standard 189.1, Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, will hold its first meeting at ASHRAE’s 2009 Winter Conference on Tuesday, January 27, in Chicago.


The committee has been expanded to 34 voting members after a recent call for members to broaden the variety of industries, designers, and code officials participating.

Proposed Standard 189.1 is being developed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) in conjunction with the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). This is the first such code-intended green building standard in the United States.

Meant to provide minimum criteria for green building practices, the standard is applicable to new commercial buildings and major renovation projects. When completed, it will address energy efficiency, a building’s impact on the atmosphere, sustainable sites, water use efficiency, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality, among other high-performance green building issues.


The proposed standard has generated substantial public interest, with more than 900 comments received during each of two previous public reviews. It is anticipated that the standard will undergo a new full public review in the near future as technical guidance and input is offered by new committee members.


ASHRAE - American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers

ASHRAE, founded in 1894, is a building technology society with more than 53,500 members worldwide. The Society and its members focus on building systems, energy efficiency, indoor air quality, refrigeration and sustainability within the industry. Through research, standards writing, publishing and continuing education, ASHRAE shapes tomorrow’s built environment today. 


ASHRAE is headquartered in Atlanta, GA.

The Government Affairs Office, located in Washington, DC, works with federal government leaders as well as other scientific and engineering societies, trade associations and public interest groups.

For more information, visit or contact Doug Read, Mark Ames, and Jim Scarborough in the Government Affairs Office. 


ASHRAE Government Affairs Office

1828 L Street NW, Suite 810

Washington, DC 20036




David Palty

ASHRAE – Tucson Chapter

Grassroots Government Activities Committee (GGAC) Chair






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