ASHRAE looks at making Handbook more sustainable

By Plant Engineering Staff September 21, 2006

To help engineers respond to environmental challenges, ASHRAE is working to ensure guidance on sustainable design is incorporated in the ASHRAE Handbook.

ASHRAE is conducting a review of the sustainability content of all chapters and is looking at writing a new chapter on sustainability, with a view toward integrated building design in its fundamentals volume.

“While the word‘sustainability’ only recently entered the vocabulary of ASHRAE, the society was involved with sustainable building and HVAC equipment design long before the term was coined,” said Norm Maxwell, P.E., chair of the Handbook Committee.

In addition to designing systems that will save energy, sustainability requires design professionals to take into account the length of service of the equipment that is proposed, he said. The end result must be a total building concept that will not have to be replaced quickly and have a long service life.

“Given the current interest in sustainable buildings and technologies and ASHRAE’s long history with high-efficiency buildings and HVAC&R systems, it is appropriate that design guidance related to sustainability be incorporated in the ASHRAE Handbook,” he said.