Volume 50, Issue 4 - April 2015

Energy&Environment

Associations Move Closer
to Window PCR Completion

Two new Window Product Category Rules (PCRs) developed by a handful of industry associations are now available for review and public comment. The Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) announced the release of a draft of the PCRs, which are being established by IGMA, the American Architectural Manufacturers Association, the Glass Association of North America and the Window and Door Manufacturers Association.

One PCR is cradle-to-grave-based for a business-to-consumer environmental product declaration (EPD), covering only vertical windows, and the other is cradle-to-gate-based for business-to-business EPDs, covering all window types.

“This will be the final opportunity for the industry to comment on these PCRs, which will affect everyone in the industry required to do an LCA and provide an EPD on any of their products,” says Margaret Webb, executive director of IGMA. “These PCRs affect everyone, and if there are any concerns, they need to be raised now, as the LCA group will be meeting to review and resolve any comments received.”

PRODUCT CATEGORY RULE TIMELINE
PCR DEVELOPMENT BASIC PROCESS
1-2 Weeks
12 to 36 Weeks
3 to 6 weeks
2 to 4 weeks
1 week
PCR Search and Proposal
PCR Drafting
Draft PCR for public comment (Revise PCR as needed)
Panel review of the finalized draft PCR (Revise PCR as needed)
Publication of the approved PCR
Source:AAMA
Several steps, which can each take a week or more, must be carried out before completion and publication of a Product Category Rule.


Does Window Film Need Another Rating System?

Is there room for another window film rating system? The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) thinks so. With a $1.6 million cost-shared grant from the DOE, the Window Covering Manufacturers Association (WCMA) launched the new Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC).

AERC says it “will design and administer a new energy rating and certification program for the fenestration attachment products,” including applied films.

According to the release, the council will gather key market and technical data to develop credible rating, certification, labeling and performance-verification procedures that will be adopted by the attachments industry. “At present there is no accurate method to assess the performance of individual products or for consumers to distinguish among the relative energy-saving performance of competing window attachment products,” the release reads.

Officials at the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC), which has a rating system for window film, are unsure what the AERC’s end goal is regarding film.

Ray McGowan, senior program manager at NFRC, says there’s no need for another rating system for window film. “It’d be a waste of their time. We find it a little puzzling since we already have a rating. We certainly don’t want two ratings out there.”

USGlass contacted the DOE regarding already-existing ratings and received this statement: “The department has developed a strategy to support the rapid deployment and installation of energy-efficient fenestration attachments based on its own analysis and stakeholder feedback ... to make it easier for consumers to understand how these products conserve energy and to help them compare various products and models … It is unclear how the NFRC and AERC ratings for window films will compare to one another. The AERC ratings have not yet been finalized."


USG
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