PART1—SCOPE AND APPLICATION
These regulations shall be known as the Green Construction Code of [NAME OF JURISDICTION] hereinafter referred to as “this code.”
The purpose of this code is to provide minimum requirements for the siting, design, construction, and plans for operation of high-performance green buildings to: reduce emissions from buildings and building systems; enhance building occupant health and comfort; conserve water resources; protect local biodiversity and ecosystem services; promote sustainable and regenerative materials cycles; enhance building quality; enhance resilience to natural, technological, and human-caused hazards; and support the goal of development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
This code is intended to provide the technical basis of mandatory building codes and regulations for high-performance green buildings that are broadly adoptable by national and local jurisdictions.
This code contains requirements that address site sustainability, water use efficiency, energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality (IEQ), materials and resources, and construction and plans for operation. This code applies only to the following building projects:
1.New buildings and their systems.
2.New portions of buildings and their systems.
3.New systems and equipment in existing buildings.
4.Relocated existing buildings and temporary structures where specified in this code.
The provisions of this code do not apply to the following:
2.Multifamily dwellings of three stories or fewer above grade.
3.Manufactured houses (mobile homes).
4.Manufactured houses (modular).
5.Building projects that use none of the following:
(Informative note: The provisions in Appendix J for residential and multifamily construction apply where adopted by the authority having jurisdiction.)
The requirements in this code shall not be used to circumvent any applicable safety, health, or environmental requirements.
1.Prescriptive Option (x.4) or
2.Performance Option (x.5).
101.4.2 (4.1.1)Referenced Standards.
The standards referenced in this code and listed in Chapter 11 shall be considered to be part of the requirements of this code to the prescribed extent of such reference. Where differences exist between provisions of this code and a referenced standard, the provisions of this code shall apply. Informative references in Informative Appendix G are cited to acknowledge sources and are not part of this code.
101.4.3 (4.1.2)Normative Appendices.
The normative appendices to this code are considered to be integral parts of the mandatory requirements of this code, which for reasons of convenience are placed apart from all other normative elements.
101.4.4 (4.1.3)Informative Appendices.
The informative appendices to this code, and informative notes located within this code, contain additional information and are not mandatory or part of this code.
101.4.5 (4.1.4)Referenced Standard Reproduction Annexes.
The referenced standard reproduction annexes contain material that is cited in this code but that is contained in another standard. The reference standard reproduction annexes are not part of this code but are included in its publication to facilitate its use.
Where there is a conflict between a general requirement and a specific requirement of this code, the specific requirement shall be applicable. Where, in any specific case, different sections of the code specify different materials, methods of construction or other requirements, the most practical requirement to meet the intent of the code shall govern.
The provisions of this code shall not be deemed to nullify any provisions of local, state or federal law.
102.3Application of references.
References to chapter or section numbers, or to provisions not specifically identified by number, shall be construed to refer to such chapter, section or provision of this code.
102.4Referenced codes and standards.
Where adopted by the authority having jurisdiction, the following codes shall be considered to be part of the requirements of this code: International Building Code, International Code Council Performance Code, International Energy Conservation Code, International Existing Building Code, International Fire Code, International Fuel Gas Code, International Mechanical Code, International Plumbing Code, International Property Maintenance Code, and International Residential Code.
Where the extent of the reference to a referenced code or standard includes subject matter that is within the scope of this code or the International Codes as adopted by the authority having jurisdiction listed in Section 102.4, the provisions of this code or the International Codes listed in Section 102.4, as applicable, shall take precedence over the provisions in the referenced code or standard.
102.4.2Application of referenced standards.
The standards referenced in this code and listed in Chapter 11 shall be considered to be part of the requirements of this code to the prescribed extent of such reference. Where differences exist between the provisions of this code and a referenced standard, the provisions of this code shall apply.
In the event that any part or provision of this code is held to be illegal or void, this shall not have the effect of making void or illegal any of the other parts or provisions.
The legal occupancy of any structure existing on the date of adoption of this code shall be permitted to continue without change, except as is specifically covered in this code, and where adopted by the authority having jurisdiction, the International Building Code, the International Existing Building Code, the International Property Maintenance Code or the International Fire Code, or as is deemed necessary by the authority having jurisdiction for the general safety and welfare of building occupants and the public.
102.7Mixed occupancy buildings.
In mixed occupancy buildings, each portion of a building shall comply with the specific requirements of this code applicable to each specific occupancy.
PART2—ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT
DUTIES AND POWERS OF THE AUTHORITY
The authority having jurisdiction is hereby authorized and directed to enforce the provisions of this code. The authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to render interpretations of this code and to adopt policies and procedures in order to clarify the application of its provisions and how this code relates to other applicable codes and ordinances. Such interpretations, policies and procedures shall be in compliance with the intent and purpose of this code and other applicable codes and ordinances. Such policies and procedures shall not have the effect of waiving requirements specifically provided for in this code or other applicable codes and ordinances.
103.2Applications and permits.
The authority having jurisdiction shall enforce compliance with the provisions of this code as part of the enforcement of other applicable codes and regulations, including the referenced codes listed in Section 102.4.
103.3Notices and orders.
The authority having jurisdiction shall issue all necessary notices or orders to ensure compliance with this code.
The authority having jurisdiction shall make inspections, as required, to determine code compliance, or the authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to accept reports of inspection by approved agencies or individuals. The authority having jurisdiction is authorized to engage such expert opinion as deemed necessary to report on unusual technical issues that arise, subject to the approval of the appointing authority.
104.1Information on construction documents.
Where adopted by the authority having jurisdiction, the content and format of construction documents shall comply with the International Building Code.
This code is not intended to prevent the use of any material, method of construction, design, system, or innovative approach not specifically prescribed herein, provided that such construction, design, system or innovative approach has been approved by the authority having jurisdiction as meeting the intent of this code and all other applicable laws, codes and ordinances.
105.2Approved materials and equipment.
Materials, equipment, devices and innovative approaches approved by the authority having jurisdiction shall be constructed, installed and maintained in accordance with such approval.
105.2.1Used materials, products and equipment.
Used materials, products and equipment that are to be reused shall meet the requirements of this code for new materials. Used equipment and devices that are to be reused are subject to the approval of the authority having jurisdiction.
Where there are practical difficulties involved in carrying out the provisions of this code, the authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to grant modifications for individual cases, upon application of the owner or the owner’s authorized agent, provided the authority having jurisdiction shall first find that special individual reason makes the strict letter of this code impractical and that the modification is in compliance with the intent and purpose of this code and that such modification does not lessen the minimum requirements of this code. The details of granting modifications shall be recorded and entered in the files of the department.
105.4Innovative approaches and alternative materials, design, and methods of construction and equipment.
The provisions of this code are not intended to prevent the installation of any material or to prohibit any design, innovative approach, or method of construction not specifically prescribed by this code, provided that any such alternative has been approved. An alternative material, design, innovative approach or method of construction shall be reviewed and approved where the authority having jurisdiction finds that the proposed design is satisfactory and complies with the intent of the provisions of this code, and that the material, design, method or work offered is, for the purpose intended, at least the equivalent of that prescribed in this code The details of granting the use of alternative materials, designs, innovative approach and methods of construction shall be recorded and entered in the files of the department. Where the alternative material, design or method of construction is not approved, the building official shall respond in writing, stating the reasons the alternative was not approved.
Supporting data, where necessary to assist in the approval of materials or assemblies not specifically provided for in this code, shall consist of valid research reports from approved sources.
Where there is insufficient evidence of compliance with the provisions of this code, or evidence that a material or method does not conform to the requirements of this code, or in order to substantiate claims for alternative materials or methods, the authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to require tests as evidence of compliance to be made at no expense to the jurisdiction. Test methods shall be as specified in this code or by other recognized test standards. In the absence of recognized and accepted test methods, the authority having jurisdiction shall approve the testing procedures. Tests shall be performed by an approved agency. Reports of such tests shall be retained by the authority having jurisdiction for the period required for retention of public records.
The authority having jurisdiction shall be permitted to approve specific computer software, worksheets, compliance manuals and other similar materials that meet the intent of this code.
The authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to deem a national, state or local program as meeting or exceeding this code. Buildings approved in writing by such a program shall be considered to be in compliance with this code.
The authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to approve programs or compliance tools for a specified application, limited scope or specific locale, including approval that is applicable to a specific section or chapter of this code.
Any owner or owner’s authorized agent who intends to construct, enlarge, alter, repair, move, demolish, or change the occupancy of a building or structure, or to erect, install, enlarge, alter, repair, remove, convert or replace any energy, electrical, gas, mechanical or plumbing system, the installation of which is regulated by this code, or to cause any such work to be done, shall first make application to the authority having jurisdiction and obtain the required permit under the applicable adopted code (Informative Note: e.g., International Building Code) or regulation relevant to the intended work. Separate permits shall not be issued under this code. Exemptions from permit requirements shall not be deemed to grant authorization for any work to be done in any manner in violation of the provisions of this code or any other applicable laws, codes or ordinances of this jurisdiction.
Construction or work for which a permit is required shall be subject to inspection by the authority having jurisdiction and such construction or work shall remain visible and able to be accessed for inspection purposes until approved. Approval as a result of an inspection shall not be construed to be an approval of a violation of the provisions of this code or of other ordinances of the jurisdiction. Inspections presuming to give authority to violate or cancel the provisions of this code or of other ordinances of the jurisdiction shall not be valid. It shall be the duty of the owner or the owner’s authorized agent to cause the work to remain accessible and exposed for inspection purposes. Neither the authority having jurisdiction nor the jurisdiction shall be liable for the expense entailed in the removal or replacement of any material required to allow inspection.
BOARD OF APPEALS
Appeals of orders, decisions or determinations made by the authority having jurisdiction relative to the application and interpretation of this code shall be made to a Board of Appeals as determined by the jurisdiction.
108.2Limitations on authority.
An application for appeal shall be based on a claim that the true intent of this code or the rules legally adopted there under have been incorrectly interpreted, the provisions of this code do not fully apply or an equivalent or better form of construction is proposed. The board shall not have authority to waive requirements of this code.
The members of the board of appeals related to interpretation of this code shall be qualified by experience and training in the matters covered by this code and shall not be employees of the jurisdiction.
CERTIFICATE OF OCCUPANCY
Issuance of a certificate of occupancy shall not be construed as an approval of a violation of the provisions of this code or of other ordinances of the jurisdiction.
2018 International Green Construction Code