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06/11/2014

Energy and Commerce Committee Approves Bill with Mechanical Insulation Language

Energy and Commerce Committee Approves Bill with Mechanical Insulation Language

On Tuesday, June 10, the House of Representatives' Energy and Commerce Committee approved H.R. 4801, a bill that would require the Secretary of Energy to prepare a report on the impact of thermal insulation on both energy and water use for potable hot water in federal buildings. This bill was introduced by Representative Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) and co-sponsored by Representative Jerry McNerney (D-CA), both members of the Energy and Commerce Committee. Now that the bill has been approved by the Committee, it can go on to the full House of Representatives for consideration and passage.    
        Representative Kinzinger commented, "This bipartisan bill is a simple step towards saving energy, water, and money at a time when it has never been more important to be smart with both our natural and financial resources. Millions of gallons of water and the energy it takes to heat or cool them are wasted with current practices, but could be saved through the increased use of thermal insulation. With the federal government being the single largest consumer of energy in the country, doing our best to maximize the potential savings from improved insulation systems is a common sense step I think everybody can agree on."  
          This bill represents an opportunity to provide data that can substantiate the benefits of insulation in saving both water and energy, which is becoming an increasingly important objective. Representative McNerney affirmed "It is important for us to look for ways to save taxpayer money and make sure the federal government is doing its part to preserve our natural resources. Thermal insulation can be a simple and effective way to reduce costs and help conserve both water and energy. Additionally, we can use the findings from this study and make sure we are doing everything we can in both federal and private buildings to maximize energy and water efficiency."
        The potential data we could obtain if this bill is passed could be used to create a compelling business case for the increased use of mechanical insulation in government and commercial projects. Given the difficulty of getting legislation introduced on Capitol Hill, it is a huge victory to have our bill up for consideration before the House of Representatives. We intend to continue to collaborate with our allies on Capitol Hill to work to pass this legislation in the House and Senate. NIA would like to extend its thanks to Representatives Kinzinger and McNerney for all their hard work in getting this bill approved by the Energy and Commerce Committee.
 
   
Actual Language from H.R. 4801:
 
To require the Secretary of Energy to prepare a report on the impact of thermal insulation on both energy and water use for potable hot water.
 
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
 
SECTION 1. REPORT ON ENERGY AND WATER SAVINGS POTENTIAL FROM THERMAL INSULATION.
 
(a) Report.--Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Energy, in consultation with appropriate Federal agencies and relevant stakeholders, shall submit to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate and the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House of Representatives a report on the impact of thermal insulation on both energy and water use systems for potable hot and chilled water in Federal buildings, and the return on investment of installing such insulation.
(b) Contents.--The report shall include--
     (1) an analysis based on the cost of municipal or regional water for delivered water and the avoided cost of new water; and
     (2) a summary of energy and water savings, including short-term and long-term (20 years) projections of such savings.


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