Now that we have this “new energy code” that went into effect Sept. 1, in Texas to make buildings more energy efficient, it’s in our face. The task was placed on design professionals and the construction industry to develop new ways in wall assemblies to conserve energy. It’s a good idea and long overdue. It’s all about being more conservative about what we waste, energy and money. It’s kind of like the green movement or LEED. Buildings generate up to 35 percent of all greenhouse gases, 35 percent of landfill waste comes from construction and demolition activities, and 70 percent of municipal water is consumed in and around buildings.
Construction projects building to the LEED concept have strict criteria to gain this honor. Recycling of scrap or unused cut off materials, natural light and even cisterns (tanks) to recover rain water just to name a few. LEED buildings are energy efficient but energy efficient buildings are not necessarily LEED.