Draft Addendum to ANSI/ASHRAE 62.2 Standard Would  Prohibit Unvented, Gas-Fired Space Heaters Published for 30 Day Public Review and Comment.
Today,  the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) published a proposal (Addendum j attached) to the societies “ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.2, Ventilation and Acceptable Indoor Air Quality in Residential Buildings” that would prohibit the installation of unvented (sometimes referred to as vent-free) natural gas and propane space heaters.  The ASHRAE Standard 62.2 is a American National Standard (ANS) consensus developed model standard that has been and continues to be adopted by many states and jurisdictions throughout the United States. This is the first outright ban of a natural gas appliance in the ASHRAE 62.2 standard and the rationale for the ban cited for the prohibition is stated as “ Unacceptable concentrations of products of combustion can be generated at the ventilation rates allowed in this standard when combustion appliances are unvented”. Comments on the ban are due October 31 and can be submitted on line here:
https://osr.ashrae.org/default.aspx.  The AGA BECS staff believe that this proposal needs to be rejected for a number of reasons including the fact that there is an American National Standard (ANS Z21.11.2) for unvented gas fired space heaters that is developed through an ANS consensus standard that has substantial requirements to limit emission concentrations from unvented heaters including input restrictions of no more than 30,000 BTU’s per hour, a requirement for an Oxygen Depletion Sensor (ODS) system, limits on permissible CO and NO2 emissions and sizing requirements. Additional, the safety record for unvented gas fired space heaters is exemplary and federal agencies including the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) have monitored this product and the standard used for design certification for over 50 years.  AGA will also be working with other stakeholders who are concerned with the, what we believe, is an unwarranted  prohibition that if finalized can also become a precedent for other gas fired appliances and equipment. BECS Committee members are encouraged to file comments in opposition to this proposed prohibition and can contact BECS staff if there are any questions on this issue.

EIA Publishes Results of Building Characteristics in Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has released the building characteristics results from their 2018 Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS). The survey covers an estimated 5.9 million U.S. commercial buildings and includes data tables on the number of workers, ownership, and occupancy, structural characteristics, energy sources and uses, energy-related building features, among other items. The release of the CBECS is critical as its data are used for building energy benchmarking, forecasting, policy development, and Energy Star (as the foundation of its rating system targets). The data presented includes the number of commercial buildings that use natural gas and for what purposes, i.e. space heating, domestic water heating, etc. To access the CBECS survey, click here .

State Codes Activity Update.
Attached  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. Please review the update and determine if there are state code activities that impact your service territory or organization.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions on any of these items.