ERA Chair Reflects on Successful 2015 and Looks Forward to 2016
Greetings and Happy New Year!
January 2016 finds the staff and leadership of ERA looking back at the past year to assess our achievements, and looking forward to plan our work for the coming year. As always, our overriding goal is provide technical and research support to the construction industry, and communicate the longstanding attributes and value proposition of EPDM rubber membrane roofing materials. When ERA was founded in 2003, we were responding to what we felt was a need for unbiased, science-based information about our products. Given the increasing complexity of the building environment, we feel that need is even more acute today than it was more than ten years ago.
As Chair of ERA, I am proud to say that the organization worked hard to serve you during 2015, and saw some good results that point the way for 2016. A few highlights:
· We increased our channels of communication, so that you have a choice of where to access our information. This included expanding our social media outreach through our Twitter account (@epdmroofs), our Facebook page (EPDM Roofing Association), and this new blog on our website. We’ve produced a video to show the use of EPDM in an energy-efficient Passive House setting. And we plan to intensify this effort in 2016. We’ll keep you up-to-date on time sensitive issues such as code hearings through our Twitter account, offer infographics that will provide important and easily accessible information about the benefits of using EPDM, and expand our video production activities.
· ERA sponsored a tour at Greenbuild that showcased the use of EPDM at Weinberg Commons. This Passive House development for low-income families is designed to lower the cost of utilities for its residents. The participants on the sold-out tour got a first-hand look at how EPDM can be used in a state-of-the-art, energy efficient building.
· We testified in front of regulatory bodies, such as the Envelope Subcommittee of ASHRAE. Moving forward, a member of our staff will serve on the working committee appointed by ASHRAE to review the issue of air barriers and the efficiency of mechanically attached systems compared to fully adhered systems. Likewise, we stayed current on any government actions related to the roofing industry, from the local to the global, with ERA Executive Director Jared Blum presenting to the history-making United Nations Climate Change Conference in December. And, based on information provided by ERA, the EPA included ballasted roofing on its EnergyStar website as a system that can provide significant energy savings. Moving forward, we will monitor developments related to the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, ensuring that all who are impacted by it the important role roofing system can play in reducing carbon emissions.
· We are committed to staying up-to-date on science-based findings that inform our industry about the best use of our products. To that end, our members visited the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to hear the latest from their experts on a range of subjects, including the energy loss associated with mechanically attached roofing when compared to fully adhered systems.
As Chairman of ERA, I can tell you that my colleagues and I are embarking on 2016 energized by our successes in 2015 and by the challenges ahead. We look forward to working for and with you this year, as we inform you about the benefits of choosing EPDM for your roofing projects. Best wishes for a profitable New Year!