Welcome to the State of California

Frequently Asked Questions

  • I’m having problems; why can't I view the video?

    This site uses pop-up windows to display informational resources such as PDFs and videos. If your software is set to block pop-ups, then you will have trouble accessing these resources.

    To avoid problems, consider this a trusted site, and set your system to allow pop-ups.

    To determine if your browser is blocking pop-ups, click on the System Check link at the top of this page (available on all web pages on this site). If pop-ups are being blocked, the System Check page will guide you to the appropriate resource to instruct you on how to turn off the pop-up blocker.

    The resource links on the System Check page (available only if your browser is blocking pop-ups) will provide detailed information for most browser types, but here is a summary of what you will find there: Pop-ups are controlled by the web browser you are using to access this site. Many web browsers have a built-in toolbar with pop-up blocker options, including Internet Explorer 7, Internet Explorer 6 (with Windows XP SP2), Firefox, Opera, Safari and SeaMonkey. You may also have other toolbars installed (such as Google or Yahoo Toolbar) or other pop-up blocker software installed on your computer.

    To adjust the pop-up blocker settings on Internet Explorer 7, click Tools, Pop-up Blocker, and then Pop-up Blocker Settings if you see a small window appear at the top of your browser with the message "Pop-up blocked. To see this pop-up or additional options click here...,", click on the link, then click on the message and select the option "Always allow pop-ups from this site."

    If you use another web browser, the Help section of your blocking software will tell you how to allow pop-ups, or consult the resource links on the System Check page, as described previously. If your firewall or security software covers a network instead of just your computer, consult your Network Administrator for assistance.

  • When are the Standards effective?

    The 2008 Standards go into effect January 1, 2010. If the building permit application is submitted on or after January 1, 2010, the 2008 Standards must be followed.

  • Why were the Standards changed?

    The California Energy Commission adopted the 2008 changes to the Building Energy Efficiency Standards for a number of reasons:

    • To meet the mandate of the Warren-Alquist Act which requires that the Energy Commission periodically update the Standards and develop manuals to support the Standards
    • To provide California with an adequate, reasonably-priced, and environmentally-sound supply of energy
    • To respond to Assembly Bill 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, which mandates that California must reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020
    • To pursue California energy policy that energy efficiency is the resource of first choice for meeting California's energy needs
    • To act on the findings of California's Integrated Energy Policy Report (IEPR) that Standards are the most cost effective means to achieve energy efficiency, expects the Building Energy Efficiency Standards to continue to be upgraded over time to reduce electricity and peak demand, and recognizes the role of the Standards in reducing energy related to meeting California's water needs and in reducing greenhouse gas emissions
    • To meet the West Coast Governors' Global Warming Initiative commitment to include aggressive energy efficiency measures into updates of state building codes
    • To meet the Executive Order in the Green Building Initiative to improve the energy efficiency of nonresidential buildings through aggressive standards