[Strawbale] Big News about SB in the US

Casa Calida vzw info at casacalida...
Fri Aug 20 13:12:23 CEST 2010





Hello strawbalers in Europe!

here some exciting news to share, coming of our special guest of ESBG 
2009, David Eisenberg.
(see below)

Hello David and all involved in this Big News!

also our greatest congratulations and our deepest respect for your work 
and vision

on behalf of

- Casa Calida and strawbalers in Belgium

- the strawbale networkers all over Europe, who certainly will be 
inspired by your news

- the partners France, Spain, England, Germany, Slovakia and Belgium, 
united in a EU funded project Leonardo, in which we are working for a 
best building practice for SBBuilding and evaluation method on the 
different SB techniques, just to make a good base to go for a European 
strawbale code in the future! We will be extra motivated to go on with 
this work, knowing that you are doing these important steps in the US, 
that will have his effect on SB elsewhere!

Big hug


Op 17/08/2010 7:13, strawnet at aol... schreef:
> Hello al l,
> I want share some great news. Earlier today, here in Chicago, Martin 
> Hammer's "comment"/proposal to include the strawbale code he's been 
> working on over the past few years in California into the new 
> International Green Construction Code (IgCC) was approved by a 
> committee vote of 8 to 6! The IgCC is the new US code for commercial 
> (and high-rise residential) buildings that will become part of the 
> family of 2012 International Codes (I-codes). It will go through a 
> full code development cycIe with the rest of the 2012 I-codes next 
> year and there is work that will need to be done still to make sure it 
> doesn't get rejected in that process, but getting it into the second 
> public draft of the code now is a very big step forward.
> I served on the drafting committee for this code from last summer 
> through the spring of this year. For more information about the IgCC 
> and to download the whole IgCC first public draft and the comments -- 
> including Martin's proposals for strawbale and earthen building and 
> the EcoNest comment in support of straw clay go here:
> http://www.iccsafe.org/cs/IGCC/Pages/default.aspx
> http://www.iccsafe.org/CS/IGCC/Pages/Comments0810.aspx
> You'll find these listed as comments 5-134, 5-135 and 5-136.
> I was the only proponent speaking in favor of it here, and there were 
> others who spoke in opposition. The initial motion was to disapprove 
> but it failed 5 votes to 9 after considerable and very mixed 
> discussion -- which surprised me because of the nature of some of the 
> comments -- that it was still not ready and needed some technical fixes.
> The failure of the motion to disapprove required a new motion and 
> Chris Mathis, an old building science friend from North Carolina, 
> offered a motion for approval. That was followed by more discussion, 
> with more concerns expressed that it wasn't ready. Then, just before 
> the second vote, Chris pressed the committee to push the envelope. He 
> said they should approve it and get it in, and rather than just having 
> the few people who are very knowledgeable about it work on improving 
> the things that still need to be done, "Let thousands of people look 
> at it and help improve it through the next round of the code 
> development process!" He said it was time to start pushing these 
> things through. Then they voted - and it passed 8 to 6! I was amazed 
> and delighted! So it is going into the second public draft!
> There were two other similar proposals (they're called "comments") 
> that were heard right before the strawbale comment. The first, from 
> Paula Baker Laport and Robert Laport proposed including the straw clay 
> guidelines from New Mexico. Next was the other submitted by Martin, 
> that one in support of earthen construction based on the new ASTM 
> standard for earthen wall systems that I had initiated almost 10 years 
> ago and Bruce King has spearheaded over the past few years. I spoke in 
> support of both, but they were disapproved, though both received 
> encouraging suggestions to bring them forward again after addressing 
> non-mandatory/permissive language and other issues.
> Because they were heard one after the other, and I was the only 
> proponent for them, I got to speak first for each one and so I had a 
> total of 6 minutes (2 minutes each) to frame them all in terms of the 
> big issues I've been speaking to for all these years, including the 
> coming challenges of ever-more limited and expensive energy, the 
> low-impact, low-tech, climate beneficial, local/regional benefits, the 
> industrial/proprietary bias and difficulty in funding research, 
> testing and development for public domain, non-proprietary materials 
> and systems. I started off by talking about the fact that I had been 
> in buildings in Europe built with materials like straw clay and earth 
> that are twice as old as this country! And to say that these are 
> durable and safe ways of building when done properly. And when talking 
> about the ASTM earthen standard, I said that if they looked at it they 
> might think that it was too low tech to be reasonable compared to the 
> standards that they're used to for concrete and other industrial 
> materials. But, I said, It was intentionally low tech. That I was 
> involved in initiating that standard almost ten years ago and it was 
> both to enable the use of those materials here and to reverse the 
> outlawing of earthen building in developing countries through the 
> adoption of modern industrial codes. That it was designed to enable 
> people to build safe, durable, healthy, and affordable buildings 
> anywhere in the world---including the in United States. I mentioned 
> that the committee that developed that standard included the leading 
> experts on earthen building and engineering from around the world and 
> was based on reviewing and incorporating the best from international 
> codes and standards for earthen building.
> After the first two went down, I was quite convinced because of the 
> comments that the sb proposal would share the same fate and, 
> thankfully, I was wrong!
> So hats off to Martin, Bruce, Matts, and many others who have worked 
> so long and hard to develop these codes and to Chris Mathis for his 
> leadership and visionary action on the committee.
> Onward!
> David Eisenberg
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