October 2022

Reach Code News Brief: October 2022

Now Available: Reach Code Approach Comparison: CALGreen 2022 or the Statewide 2022 Single Family Cost-Effectiveness Study?

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With the effective date of the statewide 2022 Energy Code less than 90 days away, many local jurisdictions are hard at work crafting local measures that reach beyond the statewide thresholds to achieve local CAP and other climate goals. The statewide Reach Codes Program has recently published a useful resource for jurisdictions evaluating different approaches to local ordinances focusing on single-family new construction.

This Fact Sheet examines the differences between local amendments to the Energy Code (Title 24, Part 6) compared to adopting specific provisions from the voluntary energy efficiency section of 2022

CALGreen (Green Building Code, Title 24, Part 11). While the new 2022 Single Family New Construction Cost-Effectiveness Study supports findings of cost-effectiveness for the performance  effectiveness for the performance requirements of both approaches, there are significant differences between the two pathways.

For instance, the Study supports different performance margins for all-electric and mixed-fuel buildings while CALGreen has a single performance margin for all fuel types. Additionally, the Study supports different margins for detached homes and ADUs while under CALGreen, ADUs would be subject to the same requirements as detached homes or exempted.

The Fact Sheet provides valuable insight into the different compliance metrics being used in the 2022 Code language as well as a table showing the compliance margins under each approach for all 16 Climate Zones.

The new Fact Sheet is available here.

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Reach Codes Corner: Recap of Final Newcomers Webinar Series Event

This column is a monthly feature focusing on specific topics of interest to newcomers to the reach code development community.

The popular Reach Codes Newcomers webinar series concluded in late September with the final session focusing on implementation. The session, a result of collaboration between the Statewide Reach Codes Program, BayREN and California Climate and Energy Collaborative, featured a range of speakers from local jurisdictions, led by Misti Bruceri of the statewide program and Karen Kristiansson of BayREN.

Brian Reyes, Sustainability Planner for the County of Marin, and Lawrence Garber, Local Government Associate for Building Decarbonization Coalition, led off the session with analysis of reach code implementation efforts. Reyes shared the results of the County’s analysis while Garber provided a snapshot of BDC’s annual survey. Both presenters pointed out common challenges, including increased workload for local staff and lack of systems to track and analyze implementation data.

The session then shifted to focus on creating a framework for reach code implementation and local leaders Joe McCluskey from the City of Burlingame and Kristian Hoffland from the City of Santa Barbara shared their expertise and suggestions. These included providing training for jurisdiction staff in other departments who participate in code implementation, developing tools and checklists, or using existing tools such as the HERS registry where possible.

Finally, the team summarized the keys to successful implementation:

Staff Time

  • Plan for time for implementation
  • Designated champion for ongoing implementation
  • Time for all staff for initial training and refreshers


  • Clear, early communication with applicants
  • Clear communication with staff
    • What kind of support do they want?
    • Ongoing challenges


  • Consider what you’ll need to understand and document the policy impacts in a couple years
  • Set up systems for collecting data
  • Monitor and adjust (and report out!)

The presentation materials for this session, and all the previous sessions, are available for download on both the localenergycodes.com and BayREN websites. Session recordings are available on the Statewide Reach Codes Program YouTube channel.

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How the new Inflation Reduction Act Can Help Local Jurisdictions Achieve Reach Code and Climate Goals

The reach codes team hosted a webinar on July 7, 2022, to share draft results of the multifamily new construction cost-effectiveness analysis.

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA) was signed into law by President Joe Biden on August 16, 2022, and according to the DOE’s preliminary assessment, represents a historic, $369 billion investment in the modernization of the American energy system that will—in combination with other enacted policies and past actions—help drive 2030 economy-wide greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 40% below 2005 levels.[1]

The legislation contains several provisions that may be impactful to local jurisdictions across California as they work toward achieving their own climate goals. This article, while not intended to provide a comprehensive overview of the IRA, offers some highlights of the Act as well as some resources for more information.

Key provisions include:

  • Expansion of clean energy tax credits to drive adoption of wind and solar power
  • Competitive financing to local, state and tribal governments for climate-smart development
  • Funding for programs aimed at deploying clean energy such as rooftop solar and pollution-reducing technologies in low-income and disadvantaged communities
  • Financial assistance for clean energy projects that benefit disadvantaged communities
  • Incentives for homeowners to install heat pumps for furnace and water heater replacements, EV purchases and rooftop solar
  • Financial assistance to local governments to establish ambitious building codes, including adoption of zero-energy codes
  • Funding for state-based workforce development assistance programs to train contractors in installation of home energy efficiency and electrification improvements

Funding under the IRA will be managed and released through various federal agencies on different timetables. For instance, in some cases funding must be distributed by the end of 2024 while other funding may be available as late as the end of 2031. The availability of IRA grants will also encourage state and local governments to consider how these funds can and should be mixed with their planned use of other state and federal funds.

Some useful resources that provide more information on the IRA and funding opportunities for local governments include:

[1] The Inflation Reduction Act Drives Significant Emissions Reductions and Positions America to Reach Our Climate Goals. US Department of Energy Office of Policy. DOE/OP-0018, August 2022.

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