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State of New Mexico Adopts HERS Index Score as Compliance Option to State Energy Code

Sep 3, 2012

The State of New Mexico has adopted a HERS Index Score as a performance option of the New Mexico Energy Conservation Code.  The New Mexico Energy Conservation Code was amended to be based on the 2009 version of the International Conservation Code (IECC).  The 2009 IECC was amended to allow HERS Index Score target as a option compliance path.  The revised code specifies a HERS Index Score of 83 or less for climate zone 3 (southern portion of the state) and a HERS Index Score of 89 or less in other parts of the state.   The regulation requires that the HERS Index Score must be confirmed by a certified RESNET home energy rater.

The other significant change that the State of New Mexico adopted was determining climate zones based on altitude and not just the DOE latitude map.  So New Mexico went from having three Climate Zones  (3-5) to having five (3-7)

The effort to adopt a HERS Index Score compliance was led by the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association, Build Green New Mexico and the state’s home energy raters.

The State of New Mexico’s action demonstrates the growing momentum of code jurisdictions adopting the HERS Index Score as a performance based code compliance option and the growing number of local home builder associations supporting this movement.

The RESNET HERS Index is the industry standard by which a home’s energy efficiency is measured. The HERS or Home Energy Rating System was developed by RESNET and is the nationally recognized system for inspecting and calculating a home’s energy performance. Certified RESNET Home Energy Raters conduct inspections to verify a home’s energy performance and determine what improvements can be made to increase it. For more information click on RESNET HERS Index

Other local governments that have incorporated the HERS Index into the building code include:

  • City of Boulder, Colorado
  • County of Boulder, Colorado
  • City of Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • Town of Taos, New Mexico
  • Brookhaven, New York
  • Fayetteville, Arkansas

For more information on the State of Mexico’s HERS Index requirement click on New Mexico Energy Conservation Code