I know its late on Friday afternoon.  The SEC men’s basketball tourney is a few blocks away.  No one wants to talk about green building right now.  Most people around here only want to talk about BLUE!

But if I wait unil Monday, then I may forget to share this news and it might be too late! Four major organizations representing building safety professionals, energy and lighting engineers, green building practitioners, architects and technical standards developers have come together to establish the nation’s first model green building code (pdf) designed to rapidly advance green building practices across the United States. The four groups are: the International Code Council (ICC), the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), and the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES).

According to the announcement made yesterday, the groups are launching the International Green Construction Code (IGCC), which seeks to provide "the building industry with language that both broadens and strengthens building codes in a way that will accelerate the construction of high performance green buildings across the U.S."

The official launch date of the IGCC is March 15, 2010, when the groups will release the model language.  Of particular importantance to the release is the inclusion of Standard 189.1, which is described as follows:

Standard 189.1 is a set of technically rigorous requirements, which like the IGCC, covers criteria including water use efficiency, indoor environmental quality, energy efficiency, materials and resource use, and the building’s impact on its site and its community. Standard 189.1 was written by experts representing all areas of the building industry, who contributed tens of thousands of man hours. Developed in a little over three years, the standard underwent four public reviews in which some 2,500 comments were received.

It is great to witness the collaboration of these huge players in the green building industry.  But only a focused review of the new IGCC provisions and time will tell whether the stated goals will be met. Have a great weekend!