Codes and Regulations

Codes and Regulations


The Energy Codes enforced by individual states and local jurisdictions may be viewed by many as a “necessary evil” but you will not get a building permit without compliance. Lighting, playing a big part in these standards, has become more of an issue for many designers because of recent changes in the requirements found in nationally adopted codes. It is important to understand where they come from, how they are applied, and the differences that exist from state to state. The following websites are listed in alpha order to provide you with a resource to help make sense of the current energy requirements.

ASHRAE writes standards and guidelines in its fields of HVAC&R to guide industry in the delivery of goods and services to the public. ASHRAE standards and guidelines include uniform methods of testing for rating purposes, describe recommended practices in designing and installing equipment and provide other information to guide the industry. ASHRAE has some 87 active standards and guideline project committees, addressing such broad areas as indoor air quality, thermal comfort, energy conservation in buildings, reducing refrigerant emissions, and the designation and safety classification of refrigerants.

The Building Codes Assistance Project is dedicated to assisting states in the adoption and implementation of statewide building energy codes.

DOE's Building Energy Codes Program is an information resource on national model energy codes. State contacts, current code status, code history and construction data are located in the state energy codes database. Visit the website to view the status of a particular State's energy code.

Energy Design Resources offers a valuable palette of energy design tools and resources that help make it easier to design and build energy-efficient commercial and industrial buildings in California. The goal of this effort is to educate architects, engineers, lighting designers, and developers about techniques and technologies that contribute to energy efficient nonresidential new construction.

The International Code Council is responsible for the implementation of the ICC's state and local goals such as securing new and existing code adoptions, raising the level of awareness of ICC's building safety system at the state and local government level and working in partnership with members and code users in promoting the ICC codes and services to communities across the country.

The Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) is the recognized technical authority on illumination. For over 100 years, its objective has been to communicate information on all aspects of good lighting practice to its members, to the lighting community, and to consumers, through a variety of programs, publications, and services.

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is USA’s foremost coalition of leaders from every sector of the building industry working to promote buildings that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work. More than 6,000 member organizations work together to develop a variety of programs and services, and forge strategic alliances with key industry and research organizations and federal, state and local government agencies. The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System® is a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings.