Archive/Subscribe | August 26, 2014

Industry News & Announcements

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>>Streamlining Green Building Tool Coordination and Development

The International Code Council (ICC), ASHRAE, the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES) and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) announced the signing of a memorandum to collaborate on the development of Standard 189.1, the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and the LEED green building program. 
The aim is to create a comprehensive framework for jurisdictions looking to implement and adopt green building regulations and codes and/or provide incentives for voluntary leadership programs such as LEED. The agreement outlines the development, maintenance and implementation of new versions of ANSI/ASHRAE/IES/USGBC Standard 189.1, Standard for the Design of High-Performance, Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, and the IgCC, which will be combined into one regulatory tool. This agreement also endeavors to align the LEED program with the new code to ensure a streamlined, effective set of regulatory and above-code options for jurisdictions across the country. Read more here.
>>Huntsman Announces Manufacturing Disruption at Port Neches, Texas Facility
Huntsman Corporation announced that it experienced an unplanned manufacturing disruption on a production unit at its facility in Port Neches, Texas. There were no injuries resulting from the Aug. 15 incident. 

The disruption was caused by equipment failure. 

The Port Neches facility manufactures methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), propylene oxide (PO) and propylene glycols (PG).  The manufacturing disruption also impacts internal PO supply to downstream MDI systems, amines, surfactants and propylene oxide derivatives.  The affected unit is expected to be off-line for two to three weeks, with an estimated negative impact of $30 million EBITDA for Huntsman’s Polyurethanes and Performance Products divisions.

It is yet to be determined whether this will impact the planned maintenance scheduled for the first half of 2015. 

>>A Look Back: Executive Order on Federal Energy Management 
Source: / Elizabeth Crumpacker
With the U.S. government as the largest energy user in the country, the President fully understands the importance of leading by example. The federal government occupies nearly 500,000 buildings and operates more than 600,000 vehicles—providing the Administration with a huge opportunity to cut down on waste, saving both energy and taxpayer dollars. Read more here.


>>Report on Polyurethane Chemicals Released
IAL Consultants announced the publication of the first edition of its report on the markets for Polyurethane Chemicals and Products in the Americas (North America and South America).

Total production of polyurethane products in the Americas is reported to have been 3.98 million tonnes in 2013 compared with 3.84 million tonnes in 2012. By 2018 this figure is forecast to be 4.78 million tonnes, equivalent to an average growth of 3.7% p.a. over the next five years.
The polyurethane industry remains larger by far in North America, which is dominated by the USA, but expected growth rates are strongest in the developing South American market, at 4.7% p.a. over the forecast period. Download the full report here.

>>U.S. Department of Energy's Building America Updates
The August 2014 issue of the U.S. Department of Energy's Building America Update newsletter is now available and includes:

--Top Innovation Spotlight on Quality Management System Guidelines
--The August webinar, continuing our series on high performance enclosures
--New Code Compliance Briefs that help to facilitate market adoption of building innovations
--Residential success stories—community-scale, affordable high performance homes
--New DOE Energy Conservation Standards for residential furnace fans
--Zero Energy Ready Home technical trainings

 >>Federal Report Highlights Five Years of Progress Providing Communities with Affordable Housing, Efficient Transportation and Economic Growth
In celebration of the fifth anniversary of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released "Five Years of Learning from Communities and Coordinating Federal Investments," a report demonstrating how the three agencies are cooperating to help communities provide more housing choices, make transportation systems more efficient and reliable, and create vibrant neighborhoods that attract business development and jobs while protecting the environment.

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