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August 10, 2005

PATH Develops Practical Tools to Advance Energy-Efficient Remodeling

Projects will develop protocols and certification

WASHINGTON, DC -- In partnership with the remodeling industry, PATH is initiating a multi-year project aimed at developing voluntary guidelines, or protocols, for energy-efficient remodeling. This project evolved from PATH's Roadmap for Energy Efficiency in Existing Homes and supports the Partnership for Home Energy Efficiency, a new initiative between the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Beginning in August 2005, the project will develop protocols for assessing the energy efficiency of an existing home and identifying energy upgrades that offer the greatest economic return to the homeowner over time. The protocols will provide guidance to remodeling and trade contractors and homeowners, and help ensure that dollars invested in energy upgrades result in maximum savings. Remodelers will be able to identify and evaluate potential energy improvements, either as stand-alone projects that can improve comfort and reduce energy bills, or in conjunction with other work, such as room additions, bathroom or kitchen remodeling.

The protocols will provide a consistent, high-quality approach for the remodeling and rehabilitation industry and will be developed with significant input from remodelers, energy specialists, consumers and exiting home performance practitioners. The initial protocols are expected to be available for testing in September 2006. The Institute for Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) will conduct the work. IBTS will assemble an industry review panel to assist in project implementation.

In a related project, PATH is partnering with EPA and DOE to support the development of an industry-recognized contractor certification or credentialing program for energy efficiency. A strong, effective certification program that ensures the competency and integrity of remodelers and trade contractors is fundamental to countering entrenched perceptions of the industry. Certification also will be a strong motivator for remodelers and trade contractors, providing a way to differentiate themselves as energy-efficient solutions providers. Accordingly, a strong, effective certification program that includes training, testing and periodic review is required. This work is being carried out with PATH support by the Building Performance Institute, based in Albany NY.

Content updated on 8/10/2005

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