Advocating for a sustainable Iowa (USGBC Iowa) | U.S. Green Building Council
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USGBC Iowa is active in advocating for a more sustainable community—join them as a volunteer.

On March 6, USGBC Iowa Market Leadership Advisory Board members and supporting USGBC staff met with Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, Secretary of State Paul Pate, and Governor Terry Branstad to advocate for the implementation of the Iowa Energy Plan and STEM education programs.

USGBC Iowa's advocates also met with Senate Minority Leader Rob Hogg and encouraged him to vote "no" on SF388, an initiative to roll residential energy code requirements from the 2012 version back to the 2009 standard.

Left to right: Jeremy Sigmon, USGBC; Chris Draper, USGBC Iowa; Martha Norbeck, USGBC Iowa; Korinne Haeffel, Director, USGBC Iowa; Gov. Branstad; Lt. Gov Reynolds; Derek Nelson, USGBC Iowa; Karl Kaufman, The Weidt Group; Bruce Hamous, USGBC Iowa.

Iowa Energy Plan

The Iowa Energy Plan (IEP), an initiative between the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) and the Iowa Department of Transportation, was released in December 2016. It focuses on approaches for Iowa’s economic potential in the ever-changing energy sector. 

The four pillars of the plan include:

  1. Economic Development and Energy Careers
  2. Energy Efficiency and Conservation
  3. Iowa’s Energy Resources
  4. Transportation and Infrastructure 

USGBC Iowa advocates for the effective implementation of the following programs and initiatives for the built environment.

Iowa B3 Public Buildings Benchmarking Program

B3 benchmarking puts the power of public building energy data in the hands of public building owners to manage and reduce energy costs.  With this program, over $22 million in potential energy savings has been identified in 2,324 benchmarked buildings, according to the Iowa Energy Plan.

The IEP goal is to expand participation in the B3 program. USGBC Iowa is actively promoting enrollment and participation in support of this program.

Iowa Energy Code

The current Iowa Energy Code is IECC 2012, which by state law is to be reviewed and updated on a three-year cycle. The IEP states that the compliance with existing codes is difficult to verify, due to lack of resources in municipalities to support those pursuits, and even more of a challenge when evaluating resources for rural or underserved communities.

USGBC Iowa is developing a strategy for advocacy of improved compliance with the Iowa Energy Code.

The City Energy Management Program, established in 2014, works to address measuring and monitoring energy reduction initiatives by providing technical experts to local governments to establish energy reduction goals and create energy action plans. Implementing the Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities approach by contracting with a state entity, like the DNR, is another highlighted option to fund a full-time position to assist when other resources are not available. 

Take an active role with USGBC Iowa to advocate in support of a more sustainable built environment through volunteering as a Green Building Advocate.

Contact Korinne Haeffel to become a volunteer

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