ASHRAE 62.2 Votes to Ban Unvented Combustion Heaters.
After several years of debate on how to restrict installation of unvented combustion heaters, including “vent-free fireplaces” which are widely used throughout most of the U. S., and after ASHRAE Standards Committee and Board of Directors consideration of these restrictions in proposed standards language, the ASHRAE SSPC 62.2 voted on Wednesday to implement an outright ban of the products.  The SSPC 62.2 action puts ASHRAE in a curious position of having already agreed to implement restrictions on installation of these products, while ignoring technical justifications based upon indoor air quality data and analysis for not restricting their installation, and it now sees fit to ban the products entirely.  No new technical information was put forward at this week’s SSPC meeting to justify this change in position.  AGA had repeatedly called for remand of proposed restrictions to a SSPC subcommittee where all of the technical information on either side of the restriction issue could be vetted, but this recommendation (included in AGA’s unresolved comments against restrictions that had been proposed) was never debated.  Likewise, the ban voted on Wednesday was never considered by a cognizant 62.2 subcommittee.  The vote will be now be recanvassed among the full SSPC membership, where AGA will provide comprehensive arguments against the ban with AGA’s negative vote.  Included in AGA’s comments will be the risk of restraint of trade presented by the ban among jurisdictions that adopt the edition of Standard 62.2 that include the ban.  To date, the manufacturers of unvented combustion heaters have neglected raising this issue in their response to previously proposed restrictions, which would have eliminated most models of the products from the market.  Beyond the ban of unvented combustion heaters themselves, the potential impact of the 62.2 action will be monitored as it might be extended in future restrictions or bans of other gas-fired products, including but not limited to residential gas-fired cooking products.
International Code Council (ICC) Provides Online Access US Code Adoption Information including the International Fuel Gas Code.
On Tuesday, the International Code Council launched online building code tools for the public to access free information about the fuel gas, plumbing, mechanical, building, etc., code adopted  in their communities. The ICC reports that the “information is created in partnership with the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) and the Insurance Services Office (ISO) and the U.S. code adoption database is an interactive map that shares code adoption information at the state and local level. A one-of-a-kind U.S. code adoption tool, the database displays which codes are adopted within each state/jurisdiction and provides context and links to access further code information. “ BECS Committee members should find this information important in identifying what I-Codes and what edition are adopted in each state.
State Codes Activity Update
[This is a weekly feature of the “Friday Update” covering state code calendar activities as presented by the online utility “Fiscal Note,” which is sponsored by APGA and AGA Code and Standards. AGA staff continues to request your comments on retaining this feature for future End Use Codes and Standards Update]
Recent Activity Alerts
On January 8th, 2021, the State Building Code Council voted to delay implementation of the 2018 WSEC to July 1, 2021.
On January 19th, the Code Council will discuss a report from the Subcommittee of Building Officials on the State Fire Code which is based on the National Fire Protection Association 1 Fire Code 2018 Edition Amendment Package.
Recent and Upcoming Code Body Meetings
Building Code Council
Fire Prevention and Fire Protection Advisory Committee
Code Adoption Committee
State Codes Advisory Committee
Building Codes Council
Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission
Fire Prevention and Building Code Council
Bills with Recent Activity
Bill #
Bill Title
Primary Sponsor(s)
Last Action
Last Action Date


HB 82

Single-family Housing Modifications
Ray Ward (R)
Fiscal note publicly available
This bill requires municipalities and counties to classify certain accessory dwelling units as a permitted land use and prohibits municipalities and counties from establishing restrictions or requirements for the construction or use of certain accessory dwelling units. The bill also provides for statewide amendments to the International Residential Code related to accessory dwelling units.

HB 1322

Building and fire safety codes.
Blake Johnson (D), Carey Hamilton (D)
First reading and referred to Committee on Employment, Labor and Pensions
This bill directs the fire prevention and building safety commission to adopt, by rule, and maintain: the International Plumbing Code of the International Code Council; the International Building Code of the International Code Council; the International Mechanical Code of the International Code Council; the International Fuel Gas Code of the International Code Council; the International Fire Code of the International Code Council; the International Energy Conservation Code of the International Code Council; NFPA 70, the National Electrical Code of the National Fire Protection Association; and  NFPA72, the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code of the National Fire Protection Association.

HB 1291

Energy efficient building design standard.
Ryan Dvorak (D)
First Reading, referred to Committee on Employment, Labor and Pensions
This bill directs the fire prevention and building safety commission to adopt, by rule, the most recent edition or the 2013 edition of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers Standard 90.1 for Class 1 structures.

SB 33

Uniform Building Code Commission Amendments
Curt Bramble ®, Mike Schultz (R)
Senate received fiscal note from Fiscal Analyst
This bill adopts the 2020 edition of the National Electrical Code; amends statewide amendments to the International Building Code and the International Residential Code to reference the 2020 edition of the National Electrical Code; and amends statewide amendments to the National Electrical Code to update the reference of a deleted section.
Uniform Statewide Building Code; amendments, energy efficiency and conservation.
Kaye Kory (D)
Introduced and referred to Committee on General Laws
The bill requires the Board of Housing and Community Development to adopt amendments to the Uniform Statewide Building Code within one year of publication of a new version of the International Code Council’s International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) to address changes related to energy efficiency and conservation. The bill requires the Board to adopt Building Code standards that are at least as stringent as those contained in the newest version of the IECC.
Change applicability provisions for building codes
Justin Wayne
Referred to Urban Affairs Committee
This bill provides that for the construction or repair of any building or structure beginning on or after January 1, 2022, which is owned by the state or any state agency, the applicable state agency shall comply with local building and construction codes enacted, administered, or enforced to the extent that such codes meet or exceed the standards of the state building code.
An act concerning the establishment of high performance green building standards for voluntary adoption by municipalities.
Saud Anwar (D)
Referred to Joint Committee on Energy and Technology
This bill permits the adoption of residential and commercial building construction standards by municipalities.
Provides for the applicability of state and local construction codes
Senate Committee on Urban Affairs
Referred to Urban Affairs Committee
This bill amends section 71-6405, providing that the state building code shall be the legally applicable code in all buildings and structures owned by the state or any state agency regardless of whether the state, state agency, or applicable county, city, or village has provided for the administration or enforcement of the state building code.
Radon-resistant Regulations
Neil Breslin (D)
Referred to Senate Committee on Housing, Construction and Community Development
Requires the state fire prevention and building code council to implement rules and regulations requiring the use of radon-resistant features in new home construction.
Relating to building codes.
Ken Helm (D) Michael Dembrow (D) Lee Beyer (D)
First Reading, Referred to the Speaker’s desk.
Requires the Director of Department of Consumer and Business Services to ensure that statewide Reach Code mandates achievement of not more than 90 percent of site energy use that other statewide residential and commercial building codes require. Permits municipalities to adopt Reach Code and require adherence to code as minimum construction standard and method within municipality’s jurisdiction.
Reducing statewide greenhouse gas emissions by achieving greater decarbonization of residential and commercial buildings.
Marko Liias (D)
First reading, referred to Environment, Energy & Technology.
This bill amends section Sec. 4. RCW 19.27A.020 and 2018 c 207 s 7, providing that the building code council shall adopt rules for the Washington state energy code. The Washington state energy code shall be designed to construct increasingly low-emission energy efficient homes and buildings and achieve construction of zero fossil-fuel greenhouse gas emission homes and buildings by the year 2030. Additionally, the energy code must require new buildings to provide space heating and water heating equipment that minimizes direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions.
The state energy code for residential structures does not preempt a city, town, or county’s energy code for residential structures that provides greater reductions in energy use and greenhouse gas emissions than the requirements of the state energy code adopted by the council.