ASHRAE Government Affairs Update

High-Performance Building Coalition Works with NIBS to Help Educate Congress

The High-Performance Building Congressional Caucus Coalition (HPBCCC), established by ASHRAE in 2006, has begun new work with the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) to help educate Members of Congress on high-performance building issues.

Authorized by Congress, NIBS brings together building community luminaries to examine vexing historical and current barriers to improvements in the built environment. Through a diverse range of councils and committees, NIBS issues recommendations to Congress and the President – and it is these recommendations that will be the focus on the HPBCCC’s work with the Institute, and as Hill events and policy agendas are developed for the 113th Congress. The educational efforts of these organizations will take the form of Congressional briefings, awards, and other organized dialogue between industry leaders and Congressional staff.

Additional information on NIBS can be found at

The HPBCCC is a private sector coalition of over 160 building community stakeholders that works with the High-Performance Buildings Congressional Caucus to educate federal policymakers on the importance of high-performance buildings and how to achieve and promote them. For additional information on the HPBCCC, visit

For further information, contact Doug Read, Chairman of the HPBCCC:, 202-833-1830.

Sen. Boxer Introduces Bill to Improve Energy & Water Efficiency in Public Buildings

Earlier this week Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-CA) introduced the Promoting Efficiency and Savings in Government Act (S.52). This bill would help increase energy and water efficiency in buildings and reduce emissions by requiring the U.S. General Services Administration to conduct building audits to identify opportunities to increase efficiency and reduce costs in buildings that it owns and leases, and to report to Congress and the public within one year on these potential savings.

ASHRAE Government Affairs staff have reached out to Sen. Boxer’s office to work with the Senator on this bill. For additional information, contact Mark Ames, ASHRAE's Manager of Federal Government Affairs, at, or 202-833-1830.

National, Global Leaders Gather at DOE to Discuss Nation’s Energy Future

As part of the events over the Inaugural weekend, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) held its annual symposium - “Energy All-Stars: What’s our Energy Future.” This event featured short presentations on a wide range of source and energy efficiency issues facing multiple levels of American society from a variety of energy leaders, including:

Doyle Beneby, President and CEO, CPS Energy
Jennifer Granholm, former Michigan Governor 
Michael Liebreich, Founder and CEO, Bloomberg New Energy Finance 
Bill Nye the Science Guy 
Susan Tierney, Managing Principal, Analysis Group 
Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor of Los Angeles 

Additional information on this event can be found at

DOE Seeks Public Comment on Res. & Comm. Test Procedures for Water Heaters

As part of a new rulemaking, the U.S. Department of Energy has issued a request for information to develop a uniform efficiency descriptor and accompanying test method for residential and commercial water heaters. Comments are due by February 11, 2013. For additional information, visit

New Rule Proposed by DOE for Energy Consumption for Set-Top Boxes

The U.S. Department of Energy is proposing to establish new test procedures that describe the methods for measuring the power consumption of set-top boxes (STBs) in the on, sleep/standby, and off modes. DOE is also proposing an annual energy consumption metric to calculate the annualized energy consumption of STBs based on their power consumption in the different modes of operation. DOE will hold a public meeting (also broadcast as a webinar) on this proposed rulemaking on February 27, 2013. Comments are due by April 8, 2013. For additional information, visit

ASHRAE's Government Affairs Updates detail information on government affairs-related activities of interest to ASHRAE members and others interested in the built environment. Archives of previous updates are available from the Government Affairs website.