The Golden State will soon be in the running for another title: most energy-efficient state. According to an article that appeared in the Los Angeles Times, starting on January 1st 2014, California will be enforcing tighter regulations aimed at reducing energy consumption in heating, cooling, and lighting systems. These measures are designed to reduce wasted electricity and natural gas without sacrificing productivity or comfort.
Following a unanimous vote (4-0), the California Energy Commission will tighten regulations that govern hot water pipes, lighting control systems, windows, insulation, and other systems in new buildings and building additions. Rooftops must also be conditioned for eventual solar power systems. Fortunately, residents of Contra Costa County can hire contractors to design and install solar roofing in Orinda, CA in compliance with the new standards.
Under the new guidelines, home builders are also required to add insulation to hot water pipes, and hire independent inspectors to ensure that air conditioners are installed correctly. California’s building energy efficiency standards, which are updated on an approximately three-year cycle, requires all buildings and homes in the state to be solar-ready by January 1st 2014. Local contractors like Roofmax are aware of these changes, and can install solar roofing systems that are aesthetically pleasing and well integrated into residential roofs.
The Commission also requires commercial building owners to get energy-saving refrigeration equipment, reflective roofing, and heat-filtering windows for their properties. Other proposed changes include adding automatic controls that adjust lighting levels in relation to the amount of available sunlight inside indoor environments, and improved wall insulation. These initiatives can help California save money, reduce pollution, and eradicate the need to construct costly power plants and transmission lines.
“The update for building standards is the biggest incremental improvement in efficiency that we’ve ever made in California,” says Energy Commissioner Karen Douglas. She is confident that the target energy savings of 25 and 30 percent (for new homes and commercial buildings, respectively) can be achieved through minimizing waste in lighting, heating and cooling systems. With the new setup, experts foresee immense energy savings over the next three decades that is comparable to the output of six modem natural gas-fired power plants.
Aside from designing and installing energy-efficient solar roofing, a reputable Orinda, CA roofer, like Roofmax, can also install solar hot water heating systems. These energy-efficient heating systems are powered by solar energy, and can reduce water heating bills by as much as 50 to 80 percent. As an added incentive, Federal tax credits can be used to pay for up to 30 percent of the installation cost.
These innovative energy efficiency standards have been welcomed by various organizations. These include environmental groups, investor-owned utilities, and high-tech enterprises. By rolling out these new standards, California’s residents are assured a better quality of life.