Sustainable Building Codes In The Middle East Being Developed

Posted by Heidi Schwartz

The International Code Council and ASTM International are partnering to support the use of codes and standards in sustainable construction in the Middle East. The work is part of The Standards and Codes for Sustainable Construction project and is funded in part through the Market Development Cooperator Program at the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration. The goal is to enhance the Gulf region’s efforts in areas such as energy efficiency, water conservation, materials management, building safety, and overall economic growth.

Through 2017, ICC and ASTM will conduct technical seminars and training programs about sustainable codes and standards, disseminate information at exhibits and trade shows, and accompany industry officials to standards development and green construction code meetings.

In May, ICC and ASTM will hold a workshop in Doha, Qatar, in conjunction with the International Construction Technology and Building Materials Exhibition. The goal of the workshop is to provide information about codes and standards, build support for sustainable construction, and demonstrate the relationship between manufactured products and codes and standards.

In November, ICC and ASTM will host a delegation from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Standardization Organization (GSO) that is attending GreenBuild 2015 in Washington, DC. The agenda will include outreach sessions and an exhibition visit, as well as meetings with code officials from that area.

ASTM already has signed memoranda of understanding with all Gulf nations and the GCC Standardization Organization, engaged 150 experts from Gulf Cooperation Council countries, and been cited more than 4,000 times in Gulf-region standards and regulations, including many citations related to construction.

ICC has provided technical support for Gulf nations that have chosen to reference or adopt the International Codes, including the green code, energy code, solar provisions, and related support documents and resources, which provide governments with a set of enforceable sustainability regulations. ICC also has established the Sustainability Membership Council for ICC members interested in getting more involved in green and energy code enforcement.

As construction activities continue to expand in the Gulf region, ICC and ASTM will provide support under the Standards and Codes for Sustainable Construction project to help construct both safe and sustainable buildings.