Supervisors order building code recommendations to go green

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The San Diego County Board of Supervisors asked
staffers Wednesday to review the county building code for possible changes that
would promote more energy-saving and “green” designs.

The county already waived permit fees for home solar systems, reduced
fees for construction projects that meet state energy requirements, and adopted
regulations for solar and wind projects, according to Chairwoman Dianne Jacob
and Supervisor Dave Roberts.

The county's Green Building Incentive Program provides expedited permits
for projects that use resource-efficient construction materials, include
water conservation measures or those in line with state energy efficiency
standards, they said.

“I really believe that San Diego County has been on the cutting edge in
supporting energy efficiency and green building development through our
permit fee waivers for residential photovoltaic, permit fee reductions on
construction projects and other things to meet the state's green-building
standards,” Roberts said. “This initiative today will continue in that

Emerging sustainable building technology and advancements in energy
efficiency are increasing the range of options to reduce energy use and costs,
which prompted the board to ask staffers to look at trends and technologies to
develop potential code updates.

Staffers were given about four months to work up a plan that includes
estimates of the time and costs required to implement the potential changes,
such as prewiring buildings for rooftop solar, electric vehicle charging or
other ways of reducing or preventing a project's ill-effects on the
environment, as opposed to correcting problems after the fact.

Passive solar systems that preheat water and water recirculation systems
also will be looked at.

“The goal is for individuals and businesses in this region to be energy
independent,” Jacob said.

Jacob and Roberts said the potential changes to the building code may be
beneficial and could continue the county's support for green energy. The
supervisors have previously set goals in energy and water conservation and
efficiency, sustainability, distributed generation, transportation, consumer
choice and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

Jacob said that exploring potential green building code changes “aims
at finding new opportunities to help consumers and continue making green the
color of our future.”

Categories: KUSI