Industry News Archives — Roofing

Industry News Archives - Roofing

Applications Are Being Accepted for 2015-16 Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarship Program

The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress has announced applications are being accepted for the 2015-16 Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarship Program. The merit-based scholarship is available to NRCA contractor or supplier member employees and their families to assist in furthering their education in pursuit of careers in the roofing or building construction industries.

Applicants to the scholarship program must be full-time employees of an NRCA member company or their dependent children or spouses with a minimum of one year of full-time employment with their companies as of the application deadline date. High school seniors or graduates who plan to enroll or who are already enrolled in a full-time undergraduate course of study at a two- or four-year college, university or vocational-technical school for an entire academic year are also eligible.

Scholarship recipients are selected on the basis of academic record; potential to succeed; leadership and participation in school and community activities; honors; work experience; a statement of career goals and aspirations; and an outside appraisal.

Each recipient will receive a $5,000 award that is renewable for up to three years of undergraduate study or until a bachelors degree is earned provided the awards are renewed annually and recipients maintain at least a 3.0 GPA.

ELFA Reports Equipment Finance Sector Business Volume Up 13 Percent Since August 2013

The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association’s (ELFA) Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25), which reports economic activity from 25 companies representing a cross section of the $827 billion equipment finance sector, showed their overall new business volume for August was $7.2 billion, up 13 percent from new business volume in August 2013. Month over month, new business volume was down 9 percent from July. Year to date, cumulative new business volume increased 6 percent compared to 2013.

Receivables over 30 days increased from the previous month to 1.3 percent, and were up from 1 percent in the same period in 2013. Charge-offs were unchanged for the fifth consecutive month at an all-time low of 0.2 percent.

Credit approvals totaled 79.5 percent in August, a slight decrease from 80.3 percent the previous month. Total headcount for equipment finance companies was up 1 percent year over year.

Separately, the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundations Monthly Confidence Index (MCI-EFI) for September is 60.2, an increase from the previous month’s index of 58.9.

ELFA President and CEO William G. Sutton, CAE, said: “Continued strength in new business volume reflects the uptick in overall economic activity most economists forecast for the second half of 2014. Solid fundamentals—modest GDP growth; an improving labor market; increased consumer spending, as evidenced by strong auto sales; and low interest rates—all bode well for continued business investment in general, and the equipment finance sector, in particular. Credit quality appears manageable as well, although the index shows a slight uptick in delinquencies. Tempering this relatively good news is concern over recent geopolitical events relating to the fight against terrorism.”

Larry R. Stevens, President and Chief Executive Officer, Med One Capital, said, “The YTD-2014 metric measured by the MLFI-25 demonstrates a solid year in the equipment finance industry. If the month-to-month trends continue for the remainder of 2014, our industry will experience the strongest new business performance since well before the beginning of the recession. The industry seems to have recovered much of the strength and momentum that was lost during the financial meltdown and resultant uncertainties experienced in 2009 and 2010. This trend is largely consistent with what we are experiencing in healthcare equipment financing. The high quality reflected in the portfolios of the reporting companies demonstrates that in the face of increasing volume, credit quality remains a high priority within our industry. If this continues, it will serve us well as pressure grows to increase new business volumes in the years ahead.”

The MLFI-25 is the only index that reflects capex, or the volume of commercial equipment financed in the U.S. The MLFI-25 is released globally at 8 a.m. Eastern time from Washington, D.C. each month on the day before the U.S. Department of Commerce releases the durable goods report. The MLFI-25 is a financial indicator that complements the durable goods report and other economic indexes, including the Institute for Supply Management Index, which reports economic activity in the manufacturing sector. Together with the MLFI-25 these reports provide a complete view of the status of productive assets in the U.S. economy: equipment produced, acquired and financed.

The MLFI-25 is a time series that reflects two years of business activity for the 25 companies currently participating in the survey. The latest MLFI-25, including methodology and participants, is available now.

DoD Is Retrofitting 577,500 Buildings with High-tech Roof Systems

The nation’s largest energy user, the Department of Defense (DoD), is learning how to transform some of its 577,500 buildings and structures into state-of-art energy-saving powerhouses, by retrofitting old buildings with new high-tech roofing systems. In partnership with the Metal Construction Association (MCA) and the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory. the DoD is host to a demonstration project for reducing a building’s carbon footprint and lowering demand for energy and water. The demonstration project was part of the DoD’s Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (ESTCP) at Goodfellow Air Force Base (GAFB) in San Angelo, Texas. The model will be replicated at potentially thousands of DoD buildings throughout the country.

“We are thrilled to see this technology come together. Both the MCA and DoD see a great benefit to the broader U.S. economy when new and retrofit buildings throughout the country adopt this high performance roofing design, and work toward net-zero energy buildings,” says Scott Kriner, Technical Director, Metal Construction Association.

The dynamic roofing system was installed at the Security Forces Building at GAFB and performs many functions, using a combination of technologies that heat and cool air and water, produce electricity, and collect rainwater. The metal roof retrofit system can be installed over an existing roof, saving installation costs and keeping old roofing material out of landfills. What makes this roofing system unique is that it brings together multiple functions in one holistically designed, integrated building envelope system that can be used on flat or sloped roof designs.

The technology used is a hybrid of metal roofing, insulation, hydronic solar thermal systems, engineered air pathways, and photovoltaic (PV) cells, all designed to work symbiotically. This high performance system includes a retrofitted metal roof installed over the existing roof, which creates a cavity between the existing and new roofs. Within that cavity insulation, solar thermal heating systems and cooling of air and water for the building can be installed. More specifically, the technologies incorporated into the metal roof system are:

1) Cool metal roofing: high solar reflectance coatings on metal save up to 25% in summer cooling energy costs and helps mitigate the heat island effect in urban areas.

2) Solar thermal water heating: sun is used to preheat water for use inside the building, reducing the use of fossil fuels or electricity for hot water heaters. The heated water can also be used for space heating using a heat exchanger.

3) Rainwater harvesting: this subsystem harvests, manages and reuses rainwater for non-potable applications such as watering landscaping or flushing toilets.

4) Solar electric (PV) panels: thin film solar panels laminated on the roof provide energy for the building and even allow electricity to be sold to the grid.

With the roofing system installation at GAFB, the Department of Defense and the Metal Construction Association are demonstrating how integrating energy efficiency and solar technologies with a retrofit metal roofing system can reduce energy and water consumption, mitigate the building’s environmental impact, and lower construction and operating costs.

Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress Accepting MVP Award Nominations

The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress has announced it is accepting nominations for its 2014-15 Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award program. In its 15th year, the MVP Program honors a maximum of 10 outstanding roofing workers. One winner will be chosen as Professional Roofings Best of the Best, an honor co-sponsored by OMG Roofing Products, Agawam, Mass. The Best of the Best winner also is featured in an article in Professional Roofing .

The MVP Program recognizes leadership in the field. Roofing contractor firms can nominate any field roofing worker, foreman or superintendent. No more than three nominations per company branch will be accepted. Distributors and supplier firms may nominate up to five warehouse employees, warehouse foremen, drivers or equipment operators. Self-nominations are not accepted.

Criteria by which nominees will be evaluated include outstanding on-the-job performance; on-the-job safety performance; contributions to a team effort; community service and volunteerism; and other noteworthy contributions and activities.

Entries may be submitted by completing an official entry form, providing detailed descriptions of specific attributes, activities and other factors that make individuals noteworthy or unique. All entries must be submitted by Nov. 21, 2014.

MVP winners will receive two complimentary airfares and two nights hotel accommodations during NRCAs 128th Annual Convention in New Orleans; one complimentary conference registration and exhibit hall pass to the 2015 International Roofing Expo®; two complimentary tickets to the NRCA Awards Ceremony and Cocktail Reception where winners and their companies will be formally honored; a $100 American Express gift card; recognition in Professional Roofing magazine, NRCAs For Members Only newsletter and on The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress website; and recognition in a press release sent to local media and industry trade press.

Each person submitting a nomination by the deadline also will be placed in a drawing for an iPad2 16GB with Wi-Fi. In addition, each candidate will have his or her name entered into a drawing for a $100 American Express gift card.

Visit roofingindustryalliance.net/programs/mvp/ for more information or to submit a nomination, or contact Bennett Judson, the Alliances executive director at (800)323-9545, ext. 7513 or bjudson@roofingalliance.net. Entry forms may be downloaded online and mailed to The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress MVP Awards Program, c/o National Roofing Contractors Association, Attention: Bennett Judson, 10255 W. Higgins Road, Suite 600, Rosemont, IL 60018-5607.

Online Registration Opens for 2015 International Roofing Expo

Online registration is now open for the 2015 International Roofing Expo (IRE), taking place Feb. 24-26, 2015, at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

Online registration is available at www.TheRoofingExpo.com. where information is accessible 24-hours a day, seven days a week. Registering in advance will save attendees not only money, but also time by not having to wait in long on-site registration lines.

Online registration for the International Roofing Expo is not only fast, but very convenient, said Tracy Garcia, CEM, Director of the IRE. Attendees who spend just a few minutes online to register in advance will allow them to secure the lowest registration fee and secure a place in their desired conference session.

Registration Packages

The Super Pass — the best value — includes conference sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, as well as admission to the Expo, the Keynote by Ken Schmidt and the Welcome Party at Generations Hall. Advance prices are $370 for NRCA members and $430 for non-members.

The Day Pass includes conference sessions on Tuesday only, Wednesday only or Thursday only, as well as admission to the Expo, the Keynote by Ken Schmidt and the Welcome Party at Generations Hall. Advance prices are $220 for NRCA members and $280 for non-members.

The Spouse Pass includes conference sessions on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, as well as admission to the Expo, the Keynote by Ken Schmidt and the Welcome Party at Generations Hall. The advance price is $270 for NRCA members and non-members. The Spouse Pass is only available to spouses of a paid registrant.

The Expo Only option includes Expo admission on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, as well as admission to the Keynote by Ken Schmidt. NRCA members and non-members pay $35 in advance. Admission to the Welcome Party at Generations Hall is not included, but tickets may be purchased separately for $45 in advance.

Taking place prior to the show, additional educational opportunities are available from NRCA. Details and prices can be found on the Roofing Expos website .

Registration sponsors include PermaFelt, Atlas Roofing Corporation, ABC Supply Co. MBCI, and Nissan Commercial Vehicle.

Registering early is a great time-saver for all attendees, said Bill Good, Executive Vice President of NRCA, the show’s official sponsor. I encourage all of our members to take advantage of the discounts available through early registration.

Report Addresses Construction Industry Uncertainty and Expectations

While the construction industry is often associated with cost and schedule problems, little data has been compiled about typical levels of uncertainty, reasons, and remedies. McGraw Hill Construction has released its new SmartMarket Report, Managing Uncertainty and Expectations in Building Design and Construction. that addresses this issue by identifying:

  • Key drivers of uncertainty that create unanticipated quality, cost and schedule problems, and how they can be mitigated
  • Perspectives and expectations of owners, architects, and contractors for their own and each other’s levels of performance on projects
  • The most impactful aspects of performance and how they should be measured, so all parties can align around reasonable expectations and improve outcomes throughout the industry

The AIA Large Firm Roundtable, an organization of the largest North American architectural firms, was a founding partner in this study in an effort to improve communication and performance in the industry. “We have long recognized the lack of real data about what levels of uncertainty to expect and how to manage it well,” says Bryce Pearsall, chairman of DLR Group and chair of the AIA Large Firm Roundtable. “We have seen the work of even top-performing project teams end with conflict and strained client relationships. Increasing understanding about the challenges of complex projects is the first step toward better outcomes.”

The study encompasses input from nearly 3,000 U.S. owners, architects and contractors, as well as commentary from an advisory panel of seven leading owners representing different building types. Key findings include:

  • Owner-driven issues – such as unclear project requirements/lack of direction, accelerated schedules, and program/design changes – cause the greatest degree of project uncertainty.
  • Most owners are willing to accept a reasonable amount of imperfection in design documents, and on average expect 3-5% added construction costs as a result.
  • Increasing design/construction integration and structured communication between project team members will have the greatest impact on reducing uncertainty and improving project outcomes, but needs to be managed to maintain individual responsibilities.

Commenting on the impact of this research, Steve Jones, senior director at McGraw Hill Construction and a principal author of the report, believes it will help to “shift the conversation away from blame and more towards a proactive and collaborative approach. While uncertainty will always exist, the findings clearly point towards better ways to avoid its negative impacts on building projects, by openly acknowledging its causes and working together to reduce their incidence and mitigate their effect. Having facts about the drivers behind problems and understanding each other’s perspectives on performance are two critical elements of a formula for greater success.”

The Managing Uncertainty and Expectations in Building Design and Construction SmartMarket Report was produced by McGraw Hill Construction in partnership with the AIA Large Firm Roundtable. The American Institute of Architects, Autodesk and the Design-Build Institute of America were Premier Industry Partners for this report, and additional Industry Partners include the Associated General Contractors of America, Graphisoft, and the Lean Construction Institute. Download the full report.

Former Harley-Davidson Communications Director to Deliver IRE Keynote

KEN SCHMIDT, former director of communications at Harley-Davidson Motor Co.. will provide the keynote address for the International Roofing Expo. which will be held Feb. 24-26, 2015, at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

Held immediately prior to the opening of the show, the keynote address will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 24, from 9:45 to 10:50 a.m. in The Great Hall at the Morial Convention Center. The keynote is sponsored by Portland, Ore.-based Malarkey Roofing Products, which will exhibit in booth no. 1133.

During the address—“Make Some Noise: Open the Throttle and Dominate Your Marketplace”—Schmidt will share his expertise on brand building, corporate positioning and customer relations.

Industry News Archives - Roofing

“Ken Schmidt played a pivotal role in the famous turnaround of Harley-Davidson from the brink of bankruptcy,” says Tracy Garcia, CEM, IRE’s director. “Our attendees and exhibitors will love hearing his inspirational and motivating presentation.”

Schmidt will share his insight about how businesses of any size and scope can, like Harley-Davidson, create meaningful differentiation from competitors; maintain veteran customer relationships while innovatively pursuing new ones; improve sales through customer referrals; attract and retain employees; and revitalize corporate culture.

“Ken Schmidt is a brand visionary with proven ideas and concepts that can easily be applied to the roofing industry,” adds Bill Good, executive vice president of the Rosemont, Ill.-based NRCA, the show’s official sponsor. “By attending, our members will learn innovative ideas on how to grow their businesses.”

The keynote is included free of charge in all registration packages, but advance registration is required. Online registration will be available beginning in late September.

OSHA Extends Comment Period for Proposed Workplace Injuries and Illnesses Rule

The OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION is extending the comment period on the proposed rule to improve tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses to Oct. 14, 2014. The proposal, published Nov. 8, 2013, would amend the agency’s record-keeping regulation to add requirements for the electronic submission of injury and illness information that employers are already required to keep.

During the public meeting held on the proposal, many participants expressed concern that the proposal may create motivation for employers to under-record injuries and illnesses because each covered establishment’s injury and illness data would become publicly available on OSHA’s website. Participants also expressed concern that the proposal would lead to an increase in the number of employers who adopt practices that discourage employees from reporting recordable injuries and illnesses. OSHA is concerned the accuracy of the data collected under the new proposal could be compromised if employers adopt these practices.

“OSHA wants to make sure that employers, employees and the public have access to the most accurate data about injuries and illnesses in their workplaces so that they can take the most appropriate steps to protect worker safety and health,” says Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels.

Therefore, OSHA is soliciting comments on whether to amend the proposed rule to require that employers inform their employees of their right to report injuries and illnesses, more clearly communicate the requirement that any injury and illness reporting requirements established by the employer be reasonable and not unduly burdensome, and provide OSHA an additional remedy to prohibit employers from taking adverse action against employees for reporting injuries and illnesses.

Individuals interested in submitting comments may do so electronically at Regulations.gov. the federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Comments may also be submitted via mail or facsimile. See the Federal Register notice for details.

Berkeley Lab: Price of Solar Energy in the U.S. Continues to Fall

The price of solar energy in the United States continues to fall substantially, according to the latest editions of two annual reports produced by the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) .

A third Berkeley Lab report, written in collaboration with researchers at Yale University, the University of Texas at Austin and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), shows that local permitting and other regulatory procedures can significantly impact residential photovoltaic (PV) prices.

According to the second edition of the Utility Scale Solar report, larger utility-scale solar projects in the United States have made great strides in delivering competitively priced renewable electricity in recent years.

“The price of electricity sold to utilities under long term contracts from large-scale solar power projects has fallen by more than 70 percent since 2008, to just $50/MWh on average within a sample of contracts signed in 2013 or 2014 and concentrated among projects located in the southwestern United States,” explains Mark Bolinger of Berkeley Lab, one of the report’s authors.

Meanwhile, the average, up-front installed price of utility-scale PV projects dropped by more than one-third since the 2007-2009 period, and average project-level performance has also increased recently.

The report tracks data on installed project costs or prices, operating costs, capacity factors, and power purchase agreement prices. It focuses on ground-mounted solar projects larger than 5 MW in size, and covers both PV and concentrating solar power.

“With the growth in this segment of the solar market in recent years, we are now able to systematically review actual market data to directly observe what large-scale solar projects cost to build, how they are performing, and at what price they are selling electricity,” notes report co-author Samantha Weaver.

According to the latest edition of Tracking the Sun, an annual PV cost tracking report produced by Berkeley Lab, installed prices for residential and commercial PV systems completed in 2013 fell by roughly $0.70 per watt (W) or 12 to 15 percent from the prior year.Tracking the Sun VII_cover

“This marked the fourth consecutive year of significant price reductions for residential and commercial systems in the U.S.,” explains Galen Barbose, one of the report’s authors. Within the first six months of 2014, prices for such PV systems in many of the largest state markets have continued on their downward trajectory.

The continued decline in PV system pricing is especially noteworthy given the relatively steady price of PV modules since 2012. In recent years, reductions in the installed price of PV systems have been driven largely by the falling price of PV modules, but that dynamic appears to be shifting. In particular, the report points to the increasing importance of reductions in soft costs – which include such things as marketing and customer acquisition, system design, installation labor, and the various costs associated with permitting and inspections.

As module prices have fallen, industry and policymakers have increasingly targeted soft costs for further reductions. As Berkeley Lab’s Naïm Darghouth, another of the report’s authors, notes, “The fact that system prices have continued to fall, despite the flattening of module prices, suggests that the various initiatives targeting soft costs are beginning to bear fruit.”

The two Berkeley Lab cost-tracking reports released today also highlight the wide variability in PV system pricing, detailing the installed price differences that exist across states and across various types of PV applications and system configurations. For example, roughly 20 percent of all residential systems installed in 2013 were priced at or below $3.90/W, while an equal proportion was above $5.60/W.

Based on a third Berkeley Lab report released today, How Much Do Local Regulations Matter. some of this variation in residential PV pricing is driven by differences in local permitting and other regulatory procedures.

In particular, based on data from Vote Solar and Berkeley Lab, variations in permitting among cities can drive differences in average residential PV prices of as much as $0.18/W, or $900 for a typical residential PV installation. Based on data from DOE, meanwhile, variations in not only permitting but also a wide range of other local procedures (interconnection, planning and zoning, net metering and financing) can drive even-larger PV price differences among cities: two different statistical models estimate maximum city-level average price differences of $0.64/W and $0.93/W, or approximately $3,000 for a typical PV system.

“A variety of efforts are underway to make local procedures less onerous, and more conducive to solar market growth,” explains Ryan Wiser of Berkeley Lab. “These results highlight the magnitude of PV price reductions that might be possible through streamlining burdensome local regulatory procedures.”

The International Energy Conservation Code as Applied to Commercial Roofing Brochure Is Released

A new energy code brochure, The International Energy Conservation Code as Applied to Commercial Roofing. has been released explaining reroofing clarifications in the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). The reroofing clarifications make it very clear that almost every commercial reroofing project involving the removal and replacement of the existing roof covering must be upgraded to the current IECC R-value levels.

Billions of square feet of low-slope of commercial roofs (roofs with insulation above the deck) are replaced every year in the United States, said Jared Blum, President, PIMA. The clarification in the IECC means that whenever an existing low-slope roofing membrane is removed before a new roofing membrane is installed, the underlying roof insulation must be brought up to current code-mandated R-value levels.

The new code clarification establishes specific definitions for each major type of roofing activity that may occur on a commercial building:

Reroofing. The process of recovering or replacing an existing roof covering. See Roof Recover and Roof Replacement.

Roof Recover. The process of installing an additional roof covering over a prepared existing roof covering without removing the existing roof covering.

Roof Replacement. The process of removing an existing roof covering, repairing any damaged substrate and installing a new roof covering.

Roof Repair. Reconstruction or renewal of any part of an existing roof for the purposes of its maintenance.

The new brochure, similar in format to many other IMT brochures, contains:

  • A detailed listing of the key definitions and energy regulations that apply to commercial roofing.
  • Illustrations of typical roofing conditions.
  • A decision tree to determine the specific compliance path for any roofing application.

Because it is considered a clarification rather than a new addition to the code, officials can start enforcing the update now and dont have to wait until the 2015 version of the IECC is adopted in their jurisdiction. This brochure is succinct, easy to follow and clearly explains how to comply with the clarification, added Blum.

The International Energy Conservation Code as Applied to Commercial Roofing brochure will help local code officials better understand the energy efficiency requirements for all types of commercial roofing projects and also serve as a useful guide to explain the code requirements to roofing contractors seeking construction permits, design professionals (architects, engineers, roof consultants) involved in roofing selection and specification, as well as building owners as the ultimate end-user of the code.

The brochure is a part of a comprehensive effort by PIMA to inform members of the design community about their legal obligations to comply with the reroofing energy upgrade requirement, added Blum.

In addition to advocating for increased building energy efficiency via improved building codes, IMT also works to increase compliance with energy codes by developing and distributing informational materials suitable for use in local code jurisdictions, not only for code officials but also for owners, designers, and contractors.


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