AERC Makes Advances in Energy Ratings for Window Attachments

Attachments Energy Rating Council moving forward in developing an energy rating and certification system

New York, NY (July 9, 2015) – The Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC) has made significant progress toward the development of a new energy rating, labeling, and certification program for window attachments. This program will empower consumers with a new set of tools that provide credible information on the energy performance of window attachments, such as blinds, shades, shutters, drapes, awnings, storm panels, films and solar shades, and could ultimately lower household utility bills.

AERC’s work is off to a swift start. The AERC held its first ever Members’ Meeting in Washington D.C. in April, 2015. The Council brought together a diverse set of stakeholders representing the window attachments industry, technical experts, and public interest organizations. The meeting was attended by over forty individual representatives from all AERC member organizations. “It was incredibly exciting to see such a varied and deeply knowledgeable group of individuals together in one room contributing their expertise toward a common goal,” said Ralph Vasami, Executive Director of the AERC.

The important work continued last month as individuals from AERC member organizations met at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, CA. The session brought together technical and marketing experts from AERC members to creatively explore how the rating program will take shape.
The attendees considered the challenges and potential rewards for various stakeholders and began the detailed modeling work in small groups which led to various possibilities for potential product labels, database designs, and additional tools to help consumers understand the energy performance of window attachments. The AERC left the session with prototypes for both product labels and a product database that will reflect both residential and commercial attachment products. This planning session has provided the Council with a roadmap for its continued work in coming months.

“AERC’s cross-functional teams spanning marketing, technology and certification have taken a great stride in the organization’s development of processes, procedures and messaging to provide transparent, actionable, concrete, easy to understand stakeholder information to facilitate selecting a fenestration attachment system that meets their requirements for saving energy and improving comfort,” said John Crowley, AERC Vice President and Chair of the Technical Committee.

Despite the substantial opportunities for energy efficient window attachment products, at present there is no accurate method to assess the performance of individual products or for consumers to distinguish between the relative energy saving performance of competing window attachment products. The AERC’s work, supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, is filling this gap and paving the way for substantial energy cost savings for U.S. households and businesses.

July 16, 2015