Building Energy Code – Minnesota

Date: 16 Jan 2009 | posted in: Energy | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Minnesota’s energy code lags behind the best codes in the world(builders in Sweden, for example, built houses in 1984 to an energy code (ELAK1984) that is stricter than the 1998 Minnesota code), but Minnesota once had a model of energy efficient code when compared to other states. Minnesota Statute required that the Minnesota Energy Code"be designed to equal or exceed the most energy-conserving codes adopted by any other state." [5] Minnesota Statutes [[section]]16B.165, Subd.1; history: 1991, chapter 149, section 4.

Underthis statute, a 1994 rule was adopted requiring that by January 1998, Minnesota’s minimum residential energy code will be equivalent to the best 1% of homes now constructed in Canada — all Minnesota new homes then were be built to the Canadian Home Builders Association’s (CHBA)R-2000 standard. The standards of the R-2000 program would equal or exceed the most stringent energy conserving codes adopted by any other state.

Unfortunately, this section of the MN Statutes was repealed in 1999. Elsewhere in state law, however, the building codes maintain that "To the maximum extent practicable, the rules providing for the energy portions of the building code shall be based on and conform to model codes generally accepted throughout the U.S." and "The rules shall be economically feasible in that the resultant savings in energy procurement shall exceed the cost of the energy conserving requirements amortized over the life of the building."

More Information:


Related Statute:

§216C.19 Subd. 8. Applicability to building code; rules. In recognition of the compelling need for energy conservation in order to safeguard the public health, safety and welfare, it is necessary to provide building design and construction standards consistent with the most efficient use of energy. Therefore, the commissioner of administration, in consultation with the commissioner of public service, shall, pursuant to chapter 14, adopt rules governing building design and construction standards regarding heat loss control, illumination, and climate control. To the maximum extent practicable, the rules providing for the energy portions of the building code shall be based on and conform to model codes generally accepted throughout the United States. The rules shall apply to all new buildings and remodeling affecting heat loss control, illumination, and climate control. The rules shall be economically feasible in that the resultant savings in energy procurement shall exceed the cost of the energy-conserving requirements amortized over the life of the building. The rules adopted pursuant to this subdivision, shall be part of the State Building Code.