Industry News & Announcements

>>U.S. Department of Energy Challenge Home Student Design Competition
As part of its Building America Program, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) invited college students across the United States to participate in the DOE Challenge Home Student Design Competition and become part of a leadership movement to achieve truly sustainable homes. There are 33 teams from across North America and more than 300 students participating. 

Through the Challenge Home, DOE seeks to apply proven innovations for high-performance homes that could be implemented by the home building industry, thereby serving as "models for success." The idea behind this competition was to inspire and develop the next generation of building science professionals, to advance and enhance building science curriculum in universities, and to provide a practical and accessible competition to compliment the "more aggressive" Solar Decathlon competition. 

From April 26-28 at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., the teams will present their designs and competition awards will be announced.

Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance (SPFA) is a sponsor of this event. For details on sponsorship or for more information on the event, click here.

>>Senate Finance Committee Approves Tax Extenders Bill
The Senate Finance Committee has approved a tax extenders bill – the Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency (EXPIRE) Act – that renews the Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit (IRC Sec. 25C) through 2015 with corrected roofing language. The provisions to the Chairman’s Mark (bill) includes language "allowing energy efficient roofing products to qualify" and the text from Sen. Warner’s amendment that adds the product-neutral roofing criteria that SPFA has been advocating. "Current law specifies pigmented metal roofs and asphalt roofs with cooling granules. Update this language to ‘roof and roof products that meet Energy Star program guidelines’ (code sec. 25C(c)(1) and sec. 25C(c)(2)(D)."
To see related press release from, click here.
To see a related press release from, click here.
>>BPI Announces Release of 2013 Annual Report
The Building Performance Institute, Inc. (BPI) announced the release of its 2013 Annual Report, detailing a year of productive work leading to several major milestones for the home performance credentialing and standards setting organization, and the industry as a whole.

"Reaching our 20th anniversary in 2013 presented BPI with an opportunity to take stock of the organization's historical accomplishments and challenges," said BPI Board Chairman Carrie Smith. "While our tremendous growth triggered by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has slowed, we benefit from the broad reach of certified professionals across all 50 states and abroad, and particularly from the contributions these practitioners make to industry standards and best practices. We've learned a lot from our history. BPI's 20th anniversary was marked by several major accomplishments that set us on a strong course for the future."

A new campaign was launched that celebrates more than 75 years of innovation enabled by polyurethane. "Versatile. Durable. Incredible. Polyurethane." will employ a website, social media, advertising, and event marketing to highlight the ways polyurethane touches lives everyday.

"We want to recognize this nearly $20 billion industry and the many ways polyurethanes are used in products that we take for granted everyday," said Lee Salamone, Senior Director of the Center for Polyurethanes Industry at the American Chemistry Council. "Polyurethane’s versatility and durability are essential in a number of industries from construction to furniture, to clothing, to automotive and we look forward to celebrating the incredible success of polyurethane-enabled products with these industries."

The "Versatile. Durable. Incredible. Polyurethane." website ( will feature products that benefit from the flexibility and durability of polyurethane. Manufacturers are welcome to submit their products to
In March 2014, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) released the first three products to serve as test cases for the new Safer Consumer Products Regulation. One of the products listed is Spray Polyurethane Foam (SPF) Systems containing "unreacted" diisocyanates. 

This California state program has been in the works for seven years, and is intended to assess the necessity of certain chemicals in consumer products. Though the state has long said they intend the program to be "practical, meaningful and legally defensible," the American Chemistry Council, its member companies and other industry organizations, have continued to express concerns about whether the program in its current form will achieve those goals.

>>Nominations Sought for Polyurethane Innovation Award
The Center for the Polyurethanes Industry (CPI) of the American Chemistry Council today opened the call for entries for its 2014 Polyurethane Innovation Award. This award recognizes visionary technologies in the global polyurethanes industry and commercialized the previous year.


Nominations for this year’s award must be submitted to CPI no later than 5 p.m. EDT on June 18. Click here for the award rules and entry form. The award winner will be announced during the 2014 Polyurethanes Technical Conference, which will be held Sept. 22-24 in Dallas.