New Green Construction Code now includes Standard 189

After a development process lasting a full year, the International Code Council (ICC) has released its International Green Construction Code (IGCC). The IGCC (see EBN Aug. 2009), which was developed i…

After a development process lasting a full year, the International Code Council (ICC) has released its International Green Construction Code (IGCC). The IGCC (see EBN Aug. 2009), which was developed in partnership with The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and ASTM International, had been anticipated to provide competition to Standard 189 – the code-ready green building standard modelled on LEED that was launched in January by three other organizations (see EBN July 2009). However, all six groups stood together to support IGCC“s launch. IGCC included Standard 189 as an alternate compliance path as a first step to greater integration, rather than competing, and connecting it to ICC“s code network that reaches all 50 states and 22,000 local jurisdictions. For architects, this is good news, because we had concerns all along about what competing codes mean from a regulatory perspective, noted Paul Mendelsohn, vice president of government and community relations at AIA. The work of designers and contractors is complicated by inconsistency in codes from one community to another, and competing options could have slowed down the entire code adoption process. We saved ourselves maybe five years of fighting about it, agrees Brendan Owens, vice president for LEED technical development at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), one of the sponsors of Standard 189. Now we can be collaborative and go forward together much faster.