GANA Reminds Congress of Glass' Energy Benefits as Energy Legislation Picks Up Steam
May 12, 2010

“Clean energy goes hand in hand with our message that glass has a great story to tell with regard to energy,” Bill Yanek, executive vice president of the Glass Association of North America (GANA) told USGlass/™ yesterday afternoon. While glass industry professionals are well aware of that message, the Congressmen working on legislation likely to impact the industry aren’t as familiar with the ways that glass can improve commercial buildings’ energy efficiency, the reason that Yanek and other GANA representatives are in Washington, D.C., this week lobbying on behalf of the glass industry (CLICK HERE for related story).

In addition to promoting the need for changes in the proposed Building Star Energy Efficiency Rebate Act of 2010 (CLICK HERE for related story), Yanek and other GANA representatives have been working to increase awareness of how the glass industry is working to achieve energy efficiency improvements in commercial buildings. The move couldn’t be more timely as Sens. John Kerry and Joe Lieberman released their climate and energy legislation, the American Power Act, today, with its provisions on greenhouse gas emission caps for energy-intensive industries such as glass production (CLICK HERE for more on the bill).

“When you look over the life cycle of glass and how much energy it ends up saving, we think it more than offsets the energy used in producing glass. That’s the overarching message. We do want to make sure that Congressmen do realize that, even though we’re heavy energy consumers, our membership is also involved in the value-added glass products, as well as the renewable energy [products]," said Yanek of the message he brought to Capitol Hill this week.

Yanek added, “Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory did a study … showing you can’t get to net-zero commercial buildings without glass; we tried to take that message and not let [Congress] people forget that.”
GANA is encouraging members across the country to speak with their Congressional representatives to further raise awareness about the role of glass in improving energy efficiency.

“We realize how large the industry is and that we cover the vast majority of Congressional districts. In almost every state we have a company that is a member of GANA; a constituent can talk to an elected representative and that’s much more powerful than GANA,” Yanek said. “So the next immediate step after this is we’re going to our members and … asking them to get with their Senators and Congressmen and women and to talk to them about glass and to make sure that the elected representatives know that GANA is at the table.”

Don't miss the May newscast next week for video excerpts from our exclusive interview about Building Star.

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