Advocates

Vote to save energy.

Buildings last a long time, so how officials from municipalities across the nation vote in November on the next International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) will impact family budgets, housing markets and the local economy as a whole for generations to come. Of the 20,000 possible voters in the last code cycle, only about 500 voted on IECC proposals. With additional votes this code cycle, we can set America on a glide path to energy bill affordability, stable energy costs, U.S. energy independence and security, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved home and commercial building durability.

Why it’s important What I can do Advocate resources

Advocates

Vote to save energy efficiency.

Buildings last a long time, so how officials from municipalities across the nation vote in November on the next International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) will impact family budgets, housing markets and the local economy as a whole for generations to come. Of the 20,000 possible voters in the last code cycle, only about 500 voted on International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) proposals. With additional votes this code cycle, we can set America on a glide path to energy bill affordability, stable energy costs, U.S. energy independence and security, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and improved home and commercial building durability.

Why it’s important

What I can do

Advocate resources

The energy code is the ONLY building code that pays for itself.

The energy code is the ONLY building code that pays for itself.

Almost all building code updates have an associated cost; however, the IECC is the only code that actually pays for itself via lower energy bills, then makes money for building and home owners. Each year in the U.S. about 110,000 new commercial buildings (about 1.6 billion square feet!) and more than one million new homes are built — all new space that needs to be heated, cooled, and powered. These buildings should be constructed as energy efficiently as possible to protect owners and tenants from unnecessarily high energy bills, improve each building’s durability, and reduce pollution caused by our demand for energy.

Building codes are updated every three years, and 2019 is the year to vote on our next model energy code: the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC).

Of the 20,000 potential voters (Governmental Member Voting Representatives or GMVRs) eligible to vote in the last code cycle, only about 500 cast votes for IECC proposals.

If you want to make an even bigger difference, you may be able to vote and not even know it. Make sure you check to see if you qualify.

See who can vote

Almost anyone can be an advocate and make a difference.

Almost anyone can be an advocate and make a difference.

If you’re someone who cares about reducing energy use in buildings, you’re an ideal advocate. If you work for a city or county, or in a sustainability office, or you’re a building code official, environmentalist, low-income advocate, construction industry leader, concerned citizen, or just someone who pays an energy bill, we need your voice to make a critical difference this code cycle.

The Vote

America’s model energy code will be determined by local government employees registered as “Governmental Members” with the International Code Council (ICC), which administers the process for updating building codes. Only ICC “Governmental Members” can vote in November 2019 to determine the next energy code.

Therefore, the most important thing to do before March 29, 2019 is to get local government offices registered as “Governmental Members” with the ICC.

The Glide Path

If enough pro-efficiency officials register and vote, we can start to reduce the energy needs of new U.S. buildings, reduce carbon emissions, save households and businesses thousands in reduced energy bills, improve building durability and safety, and set America on track for energy independence and security. With modest efficiency gains at each three-year code cycle from now on, we can achieve Net Zero energy codes by the year 2050 — or sooner with stronger codes.

Let Others Know. (They Might Be Voters.)

Let Others Know. (They Might Be Voters.)

Many eligible voters are not even aware they’re eligible to vote! In fact, in previous code cycles, of the more than 100,000 potential governmental officials eligible to vote in the U.S., only about 20,000 registered to vote with the ICC, and only about 500 even cast votes for the IECC. If just 500 more had cast votes, today’s energy code would already be more efficient than it is, and we would have saved thousands in energy bills and kept many tons of greenhouse gasses from being emitted. Help educate your local government officials and get them engaged in the process.

Here’s How

  • Set up a meeting with whichever local government agencies may be interested. For example, that may be the Mayor’s office, a local sustainability officer, or your local building department.
  • Use the EECC Code Carbon Calculator to estimate the quantifiable benefits of energy reduction to your city. Bring copies of it with you to help you make your case.
  • Use the EECC resources to make your case. Discuss the importance of city leadership on climate change, and how simply voting for a more efficient national model energy code could impact your city (or state, county, region).
  •  If possible, connect with other advocates (such as a climate action group, environmental group, or city/county/state person who cares about energy, environmental, or affordability issues). Meet with them to discuss your plan. An EECC representative would be happy to attend via conference call to support your efforts. Advocating as a group shows greater support and makes it easier for you make your case.
  • Determine which messages will be of interest to the people you’re meeting with. For example, discuss your city’s economic viability, taking meaningful action on climate change, being a regional leader on energy issues, and the importance of reducing energy bills for both households and businesses.

Here’s How

  • If possible, connect with other advocates (such as a climate action group, environmental group, or city/county/state person who cares about energy, environmental, or affordability issues). Meet with them to discuss your plan. An EECC representative would be happy to attend via conference call to support your efforts. Advocating as a group shows greater support and makes it easier for you make your case.
    • Determine which messages will be of interest to the people you’re meeting with. For example, discuss your city’s economic viability, taking meaningful action on climate change, being a regional leader on energy issues, and the importance of reducing energy bills for both households and businesses.
  • Use the EECC Code Carbon Calculator to estimate the quantifiable benefits of energy reduction to your city. Bring copies of it with you to help you make your case.
  • Set up a meeting with whichever local government agencies may be interested. For example, that may be the Mayor’s office, a local sustainability officer, or your local building department.
  • Use the EECC resources to make your case. Discuss the importance of city leadership on climate change, and how simply voting for a more efficient national model energy code could impact your city (or state, county, region).

Mayors Care!

Mayors Care!

In 2018, the U.S. Conference of Mayors unanimously voted to sign a resolution calling on all cities to support stronger energy codes to reduce energy bills for citizens and businesses, and improve local economies. The Resolution “urges mayors from around the nation to work in conjunction with NGOs and other broad-based organizations promoting greater building efficiency to unite and maximize local government support for putting America’s Model Building Energy Code, the IECC, on a glide path of steady progress toward net zero building construction…”
Please help us reach out to your mayor or other local government voting representatives to get more pro-efficiency officials registered by March 29.

See the USCM Resolution

Know if you’re a potential voter.

Know if you’re a potential voter.

It’s possible that you could be a potential voter and not even know it! If you work for a city, county or state government that has registered with ICC as a “Governmental Member” (or if you’re an Honorary Member of the ICC), you are eligible to vote to determine the next IECC, but only if you’re registered with ICC by March 29, 2019. Also, your Governmental Member’s “Primary Representative” must validate you as a “Governmental Member Voting Representative” by September 23, 2019.

Per ICC policy, eligible voters include:

ICC Governmental Member Voting Representatives and Honorary Members in good standing who have been confirmed by ICC in accordance with the Electronic Voter Validation System. Such confirmations are required to be revalidated annually. Eligible Final Action voters in attendance at the Public Comment Hearing and those participating in the Online Governmental Consensus Vote shall have one vote per eligible voter on all Codes. Individuals who represent more than one Governmental Member shall be limited to a single vote.

How GMVRs Votes Work

Each Government Member may register a set number of voters called “Governmental Member Voting Representatives” or “GMVRs,” based on their town’s population. A city/town can have multiple Governmental Members, and each member is eligible to register a full roster of GMVRs, so registering multiple departments increases a city/town’s voting power.

Population (by thousands) 0-50 50 + 150 +
ICC Annual Dues per department $135 $240 $370
Votes (GMVRs) per registered Gov. Member 4 8 12

Although the full roster of GMVRs doesn’t have to be submitted until September 23, it’s best to submit all GMVRs (if possible) during ICC registration to assure this critical task is complete.

GMVRs shall be designated in writing, by the Governmental Member, and shall be employees or officials of the Governmental Member or departments of the Governmental Member, provided that each of the designated voting representatives shall be an employee or a public official actively engaged either full or part time, in the administration, formulation, implementation or enforcement of laws, ordinances, rules or regulations relating to the public health, safety and welfare.

Stay Up-to-Date

Sign up here to receive reminders about important dates pertaining to the ICC's IECC code update schedule, potential scholarships for travel to code hearings, and to receive a copy of the EECC Voter Guide when it becomes available (closer to when voting takes place).

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Our nation excels because we have the world’s most productive, creative, and innovative private sector. When we develop products and practices that improve building safety and put thousands of dollars into the wallets of homeowners, it is critical that these developments are updated in building codes and standards so that building inspectors remain familiar with new technologies and citizens and businesses can benefit from the energy savings they bring.

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