Energy Conservation Code
The process of Hawaii code approval begins at the State Building Code Council (SBCC). After a code is adopted or amended at the state level, it falls on the counties to then adopt as is or with specific county amendments. The four counties must adopt the Hawaii state building codes, or amended version, within two years. If a county does not amend/adopt within two years, the Hawaii state building codes become applicable as an interim county building code. This process also applies to the Energy Conservation Code.
In July 2018 the Hawaii State Building Code Council (SBCC) unanimously approved the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) with amendments. The code sets energy efficiency requirements for both residential and commercial buildings.
The county path involves review by the Corporation Councils followed by County Council hearings, public and stakeholder input, amendments, adoption, and approval by the mayors. The code is then enforced via the plan checking and site inspection process.
Hawaii State Energy Code Amendments to the 2018 IECC was adopted on December 15, 2020. This code went into effect for all state buildings one year later, on December 15, 2021. County amendments to 2018 IECC must be completed by December 15, 2022; if county does not amend by this date, Hawaii State Energy Code Amendments to the 2018 IECC becomes the interim county code. Therefore, until this adoption process is complete, the current version of the energy code for each county is the approved 2015 IECC with county amendments. Work begins on amending the 2021 IECC to suit Hawaii’s climatic conditions in summer 2022.