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January 2013
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CityLink Seattle

2012 Seattle Energy Code Development

Washington State has amended the 2012 IECC (International Energy Conservation Code). With each new edition of the energy code, Seattle enacts additional rules to reduce the amount of energy consumed by non-residential buildings. A limited set of new Seattle amendments will be proposed for the 2012 Seattle code, based on the 2012 IECC.

The 2012 Seattle Energy Code draft amendments are for commercial buildings. (Single-family homes and multi-family buildings below four stories will not be impacted by the 2012 updates.) The draft amendments will be discussed in a series of January meetings. These meetings will typically be two and a half hours long. Each one will focus on a limited set of topics, as outlined below.

  • Jan. 4 – Legislated energy targets, existing Seattle amendments, solar-ready roofs
  • Jan. 10 – Target performance code option, metering, plug load controls
  • Jan. 14 – Substantial alterations, allowable glazing area
  • Jan. 18 – Commissioning report, retro-commissioning
  • Jan. 24 – Review of changes and additional issues

All meetings will be held in room 4050 of the Seattle Municipal Tower, from 2:00 to 4:30 p.m.

The current schedule calls for the 2012 Seattle Energy Code to become mandatory for permit applications filed after September 1, 2013. It will be an amended version of the new state energy code, which has changed a great deal from previous editions.

City of Seattle policies mandate significant short and long-term reductions in building energy use, far beyond what can be achieved with thicker insulation or better light bulbs. Opportunities for large-scale energy reductions exist in the design process, solar energy, commissioning, plug loads, building operations and major remodeling projects. Each of these is addressed in the proposed amendments. Several amendments facilitate more efficient operations of existing and newly-constructed buildings, while others provide additional design flexibility.

Materials will be sent to the energy code email list the week before each meeting. You can contact EnergyCode@Seattle.govto be added to the Seattle Energy Code email list.

For more information about the Seattle energy code update, visit our website www.seattle.gov/dpd/Codes/Energy_Code/.