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Pca, Insurance Group Guide Combines Building Durability, Sustainability Criteria

A new document written in mandatory language that amends and appends the International Building Code (IBC) enables local governments to adopt green building codes that address high performance and conventional sustainable features. “High Performance Building Requirements for Sustainability 2.0” includes concepts

Source: Portland Cement Association, Skokie, Ill.

A new document written in mandatory language to amend and append the International Building Code (IBC) enables local governments to adopt green building codes that address high performance and conventional sustainable features. High Performance Building Requirements for Sustainability 2.0 includes concepts like energy, water and material resource conservation, while enhancing disaster resistance and setting stringent durability requirements. The criteria are organized by chapter and section consistent with the IBC format and intentionally limited to issues typically within building code, zoning and land use officialsÌ purview.

Using these requirements will give forward-thinking communities not just more efficient buildings, but more sustainable communities that have the ability to resist and recover from disasters when they occur, said Wanda D. Edwards, PE, director of building code development for Institute of Building & Home Safety (IBHS), a nonprofit organization supported by property insurance interests.

A sustainable building with a higher degree of durability can decrease the amount of materials going to landfills and use of community resources when disasters occur, adds PCA Director of Codes and Standards Steve Szoke. After Hurricane Katrina, more than 44 million cubic yards of building materials and contents were disposed of in landfills. The PCA/IBHS ordinance provides mandatory requirements for increased resistance to natural disasters with the goal of reducing the number of destroyed buildings and protecting property, and saving human life.

IBHS and PCA aligned the provisions with Whole Building Design Guide (wbdg.org) and High Performance Building Council concepts. Enacting and enforcing these provisions provides the basis for designers and owners to obtain certification as a U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for New Construction (LEED-NC). Free downloads of High Performance Building Requirements for Sustainability can be obtained by visiting www.cement.org/codes.