Hawai‘i ENERGY BUILDING CODE + IECC UPDATES

Energy building codes are perhaps the most cost-effective means of reducing energy use while providing new homes and buildings with improved comfort and safety. These codes are updated nationally every three years and embody continuous improvements in building materials, windows, cooling equipment, water heating, and lighting.

2018 IECC Update

In July 2018 the Hawaii State Building Code Council (SBCC) unanimously approved the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with amendments. The code sets energy efficiency requirements for both residential and commercial buildings. The code was then sent to the counties for adoption.

The county path involves review by the Corporation Councils followed by County Council hearings, amendments, adoption, and approval by the mayors. The code is then enforced via the plan checking and site inspection process. To date, Hawai‘i County has adopted the 2018 update and the other counties indicate that will do so by the end of 2022.

TRAININGS

October 12, 2022 – Energy Efficient Homes of the Future

Leading edge Hawai’i builders Castle & Cooke, D.R. Horton, Gentry Homes and Stanford Carr share their expertise in delivering efficient, comfortable and affordable homes. Take advantage of their experience and support the State’s transition to 100% clean energy.

April 21, 2022 – Beyond Code, Net Zero Energy and Existing Buildings

This was the third in a series of three webinars covering building energy efficiency and the energy code in Hawai‘i. This final session covered the topics of designing to exceed energy code requirements, efficiency strategies in both new and existing buildings, and incentives that are available for energy efficiency measures.

April 14, 2022 – Ventilation, Air Quality and Lighting

This was the second in a series of three webinars covering building energy efficiency and the energy code in Hawai‘i. This session focused on thermal comfort and indoor air quality, and covered fundamentals of building systems, including lighting, air conditioning, ventilation, and air filtration. The emphasis was on residential building systems.

April 7, 2022 – Building Energy Efficiency Fundamentals and the Energy Code Basics

This was the first in a series of three webinars covering building energy efficiency and the energy code in Hawai‘i, with a focus on residential buildings. This session introduced a set of education modules that cover a range of building efficiency topics and then focused on the topics of building energy fundamentals and an overview of Hawai‘i’s building energy code.

December 9, 2021 – Complying With the Energy Code – 2018 IECC with Hawai‘i Amendments

A new energy code takes effect for Hawai‘i State building projects on December 14, 2021, and for other projects no later than December 2022, depending on adoption by the Counties. This webinar provided guidance on the energy code compliance process and covered a range of project types, including new construction and alteration projects.

Presenters: Howard Wiig, Energy Analyst with the State Energy Office and Chair of the State Building Code Council, and Erik Kolderup, building energy consultant and energy code specialist.

December 2, 2021 – Zero Energy Home Design

The need for zero-energy homes is greater than ever as Hawai‘i transitions to 100 percent clean energy. This webinar provided information to help designers and contractors to integrate efficiency, solar energy, and energy storage.

Presenters: Howard Wiig, Energy Analyst with the State Energy Office and Chair of the State Building Code Council, and Erik Kolderup, building energy consultant and energy code specialist.

May 12 & 19, 2021 – Energy Code Update – 2018 IECC with Hawai‘i Amendments

Presenters: Howard Wiig, Energy Analyst with the State Energy Office and Chair of the State Building Code Council, and Erik Kolderup, building energy consultant and energy code specialist.

An update to the building energy code has been adopted by the State Building Code Council, moving Hawai‘i from the 2015 IECC to the 2018 IECC. The webinars provided an overview of code requirements with emphasis on the Hawai‘i amendments and updated requirements.

Commercial and High-Rise Residential Requirements Training Material

Low-Rise Residential Requirements Training Material

July 30, 2020 – Dueling UV Pulses: The Most Efficient Way of Zapping the COVID Virus?

“Pulsed Light” refers to ultraviolet (UV) light delivered in powerful and energy-efficient bursts every few seconds to disintegrate the COVID virus. The prime economic advantage of intense pulses is the ability to quickly disinfect high-touch surfaces in a short period of time as compared to the continuous lower-level light output of traditional UV light fixtures. As a result of this efficiency, a facility can disinfect many more areas in a shorter period of time.

Presenters: Morris Miller, CEO of Xenex Disinfection Services, and Brian Stern, CEO of PURO Corporation.

June 19, 2020 – Honolulu Amendments to the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code

This webinar covered the new City and County of Honolulu amendments to the 2015 IECC, which were approved by the City Council in May. Code changes affect both residential and nonresidential requirements. The amendments include changes to envelope efficiency and lighting control requirements, as well as provisions for solar electric and electric vehicle readiness.

Presenters: Erik Kolderup, P.E., Kolderup Consulting; Rocky Mould, Energy Program Manager, City and County of Honolulu; and Brian Kealoha, Executive Director, Hawai‘i Energy.

April 29, 2020 – Residential Requirements of the 2015 IECC with County Amendments

This webinar for architects and contractors in Hawai‘i covered the low-rise residential requirements of the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code, including county amendments. Both envelope and systems requirements were addressed along with the unique Tropical Zone compliance option. A local panel answered questions and discussed their experiences with energy code compliance.

Presenters: Erik Kolderup, P.E., has been an energy code specialist for over 20 years, and was instrumental in creating Hawai‘i’s energy codes in the 1990s and in 2001.

March 24, 2020 – Energy Modeling for 2015 IECC Compliance and Net Zero Design

This webinar and panel discussion provided guidance for designers and project managers, and addresses the following questions: What are appropriate applications for energy modeling? When should I use energy modeling for energy code compliance? Should architects do energy modeling? How do I work effectively with an energy modeler? How do I plan for effective use of energy modeling in design?

Presenters: Erik Kolderup, P.E., Kolderup Consulting, and Howard Wiig, Hawai‘i State Energy Office.

Panelists: Mark Ayers, AIA, LEED AP, Ferraro Choi; Charles Chaloeicheep, P.E., LEED AP, WSP; Kim Claucherty, AIA, BSME, LEED AP, Ferraro Choi; Samantha Nakamura, P.E., LEED AP, WSP; and Lester Ng, LEED AP, AHL.

August 2019 – Hawai‘i’s 2015 IECC County Amendments and Envelope Design

The Hawai‘i State Energy Office, Hawai‘i Energy, and allied professional organizations sponsored free training sessions that covered the new code’s building envelope requirements. The training explained how to comply with the code and also covered the building science behind the building envelope’s impact on cooling loads, energy consumption, and occupant comfort.

Presenters: Erik Kolderup, P.E., and Howard Wiig, M.A.

April 2018 – International Energy Conservation Code Training

A series of free statewide training sessions were offered to government employees, architects, engineers, contractors, and others in the design and construction community. The training sessions covered energy-efficient design concepts and code requirements for both residential and commercial buildings. Updated checklists were provided and new requirements were highlighted.

PLANS FOR Future codes

Future IECC measures will include working with the utilities to network homes and buildings using clean electrical sources to create integrated grids at the campus and community level. This will involve customers voluntarily (in exchange for lower utility prices) engaging in a demand response program, wherein they agree to have some of their electrical power curtailed when the utility is running short of supply. The time of use pricing measure involves customers using as much energy as possible when supply is plentiful and curtailing use when supply is short. A third program is demand response II, wherein customers with PV batteries or with EVs agree (in exchange for a reduced electricity rate) to have their batteries tapped into when electricity demand is high and supply short.

Ultimately it is the goal of the International Codes Council to adopt zero net energy (ZNE) codes by 2030. ZNE is achieved when homes and buildings reduce energy use to an absolute minimum and produce an equivalent amount of energy on site or off site — usually by solar and wind.

2015 IECC

In July 2015 the Hawai‘i State Building Code Council (SBCC) unanimously approved the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with amendments. The code sets energy efficiency requirements for both residential and commercial buildings.

Following SBCC adoption, the state followed the Administrative Rule path to state adoption and the counties followed the County Council path to county adoption. The Administrative Rule path involved approval by the Attorney General, review by the Legislative Review Board, and approval by the Small Business Regulatory Review Board, which occurred on December 8, 2016. In 2017 SBCC voted to cease following the Administrative Rule process. Instead, once the SBCC adopts or amends a code the counties then adopt the code as is or with county amendments.

The county path involves review by the Corporation Councils followed by County Council hearings, amendments, adoption, and approval by the mayors. The code is then enforced via the plan checking and site inspection process.

Honolulu County Energy Code
Adoption of 2015 IECC with Honolulu County Amendments (PDF)

Hawai‘i County Energy Code
Adoption of 2015 IECC with Hawai‘i County Amendments (PDF)

Maui County Energy Code
Adoption of 2015 IECC with Maui County Amendments (PDF)

Kauai County Energy Code
Adoption of 2015 IECC with Kauai County Amendments (PDF)

Instructions to Purchase the 2015 IECC

The 2015 IECC is available for purchase online from the International Code Council; follow links to “Store” and “2015 International Codes and References.” The document may also be available at other online retailers. A read-only version is available on the IECC link below.

Updated Hawai‘i State Amendments and Model Code

SBCC-approved amendments to the 2018 IECC to add compliance flexibility and adapt the requirements to Hawai‘i’s unique climate.

Additional Resources

REScheckTM software
Compliance software for the residential portion of the 2015 IECC. At present it does not implement the envelope compliance options that are included in the Hawai‘i amendments. Both online and desktop versions are available.

COMcheckTM software
Commercial building compliance software for the 2015 IECC. Both online and desktop versions are available.

Pre-2015 IECC

The adoption of the 2006 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) marked a dramatic improvement in energy code quality. The prior energy code, adopted in 1994, was in response to the National Energy Policy Act of 1992. The residential section had few requirements and the commercial building requirements were based on the 1989 American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) standards.

The International Codes Council (ICC) was formed in 1994 and published the 2003 code with a strong residential component. The ICC has since revised building codes on three-year cycles.

In 2007 the Hawai‘i State Legislature formed the Hawai‘i Building Code Council to align Hawai‘i with ICC’s policy of updating building codes every three years. The 2006 IECC, amended to suit Hawai‘i’s unique climate, was adopted in 2009.

In the ensuing years, the Hawai‘i Building Code Council improved the national 2009 IECC and it was approved by the Council. However, the 2009 IECC was adopted only by Kauai.

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