Metal Construction Association Welcomes New Members

The Metal Construction Association welcomes five additional companies to its membership. Byrne Metals Corp., DECRA Roofing Systems, D.I. Roof Seamers, S-5! and TopHat Framing have joined the ranks of about 74 member companies with specialties in the metal construction industry.

Byrne Metals Corp. is a leader in the architectural metalwork industry and offers fabrication and installation of metal walls, roofing and accents for projects across the Southwest.

DECRA Roofing Systems has more than 50 years of experience manufacturing and marketing stone-coated steel roofing systems.

D.I. Roof Seamers is recognized as the largest dedicated Roof Seamer Manufacturer in the world. Jonathan Rider, D.I. Marketing Coordinator says, “Joining the MCA was an easy decision for us. DI Roof Seamers is very proud of our association with such an amazing group and we look forward to many years of working together with MCA. We feel that the mission and collective interest of the MCA are things that we passionately share.”

S-5! is recognized as an authority on attachment technology for metal roofs, producing unique attachment products for the metal roofing industry.

TopHat Framing provides advanced roofing retrofit framing solutions through innovative product lines. Tim Lane, President of TopHat says, “There is no better way to meet so many members of our industry than at an MCA meeting. But that was only one of my reasons for joining the association. I also look forward to engaging at the council level on issues specific to my business so together we can move the industry in a positive direction.”

Solar Market to Grow 75 Percent by 2019

Led by China, the solar industry will grow at a CAGR of 8.3 percent from 37.5 GWp in 2013 to 65.6 GWp in 2019, but emerging trade disputes involving the Asian giant, as much as global policies, cast a shadow over short-term prospects, according to Lux Research.

China became the biggest solar market in the world with 11.8 GWp installations in 2013, and has been key to faster-than-expected global recovery. Since the competitive bankruptcy-ridden cost environment of 2012, module supplier margins have increased, with most Tier-1 suppliers topping 10 percent toward the end of 2013 and 15% in the first quarter of 2014.

With solar now fairly common in most parts of the world, it reaps the rewards of direct incentives but also faces uncertainty due to pressure on trade activity with China,” said Matthew Feinstein, Lux Research Senior Analyst and the lead author of the report titled, “Solar Market Size Update 2014: Reform for the Long Haul.”

“Furthermore, as an increasingly commonplace electricity source, most major markets are dealing with some combination of these dynamics, complicating the status of policy globally,” he added.

Lux Research analysts evaluated the growth trajectory of the solar industry, besides weighing policy and other challenges. Among their findings:

Growth is fastest in the Americas. At a CAGR of 16.3 percent, the Americas will be the fastest-growing region in the world as its new installations market nearly triples from 5.3 GWp in 2013 to 15.4 GWp in 2019. The U.S. will pace the rest of the Americas, growing from 4.7 GWp to 11.7 GWp but South America will grow 10-fold to 2.5 GWp in 2019. The Asia-Pacific region will grow at a lower 8.2 percent CAGR but will account for over 50 percent of global demand, led by China, Japan and other emerging markets.

Cost cuts will be sustained. With cost cuts critical to the sustained growth of the industry, incremental increases in efficiency are on course from technologies such as passivated emitter rear contact (PERC), heterojunction with intrinsic layer (HIT) and selective emitter (SE). System costs will drop by between $0.36/Wp for utility-scale and $0.60/Wp for residential by 2019. This will translate to a 20 percent cut in total system costs.

X-Si remains technology of choice. Crystalline silicon (x-Si) will dominate the solar market through 2019 even though other module technologies such as copper iridium gallium diselenide (CIGS), copper zinc tinc sulfide (CZTS), cadmium telluride (CdTe) and thin, flexible, epitaxial silicon (epi-Si) have the potential to become major threats in the future. X-Si, with an 84.6% market share, will grow from 31.6 GWp in 2013 to 55.7 GWp in 2019, growing at a CAGR of 8.45%. CdTe and CIGS will be a distant second – growing to 4.8 GWp and 4.2 GWp, respectively, in 2019.

The report, titled “Solar Market Size Update 2014: Reform for the Long Haul,” is part of the Lux Research Solar Intelligence service.

Copper Development Association Offers AIA-accredited Introductory Course on Copper

The Copper Development Association (CDA) has received accreditation from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for its introductory course on copper and its unique properties. The course, which covers mining, processing, material properties and typical uses of copper, will earn students one Learning Unit Credit from the AIA.

The course was launched as part of a new informational tool, the Copper Learning Center, that has been developed by the CDA. This virtual classroom provides students and industry professionals easy access to extensive information on copper and its many applications.

CDA has gathered information from industry experts in order to provide the most accurate information on copper usage in industry and manufacturing. The courses will be organized into concise, engaging and affordable modules that can be accessed on-demand. Future courses will be developed specifically for experienced professionals, and will focus on copper applications in building and construction, as well as sustainable energy.

“We feel that the Copper Learning Center will be a great resource for students and industry professionals alike, because it will provide an extensive, mobile-friendly and self-paced learning network,” said CDA Vice President Robert Weed.

“This learning center will continue to grow, and will provide a platform for other educational opportunities, including online webinars and access to a community of experts that can help users develop as professionals,” said Weed. “We are also working toward offering more Continuing Education credits for these courses, and will be constantly evolving the site to add even more resources for our users.”

If your organization would like to enroll multiple employees in the classes, please contact the CDA and they will work with you to establish an organizational discount. You may reach out to Kyle Sexton, Program Coordinator for CDA, at kyle.sexton@copperalliance.us.

For more information about the Copper Learning Center, watch this informational video, or click here to register for the course.

Survey: Mobile Technology Has Positive Effect on Construction, Organizations Not Budgeting for Mobile

Sage North America has announced the results of the Sage SMB Survey on Mobile Devices focused on the construction sector, which recently surveyed 331 small and midsized construction companies in the United States and Canada. The survey found that while mobile technology has had a positive impact on many facets of this industry, organizations are still not budgeting in advance for these needs and instead wait to invest in mobile on a case-by-case basis.

The survey demonstrated the value of mobile devices to the construction community with more than three-quarters of organizations (76 percent) reporting that a portion of their work force is using a smartphone to access work-related information while out of the office. Seventy-seven percent of respondents reported that smartphones have had a positive effect on organizational productivity.

The positive effects of mobile technology have been most keenly felt in the area of customer service, according to the survey’s results. Seventy-five percent of respondents stated that client support has been improved in their company since the adoption of mobile technology.

“Forty-four percent of respondents stated that they have a BYOD (bring your own device) policy in place. This may explain why construction businesses don’t budget for mobile: BYOD helps ensure that expenses are relatively small,” said Joe Langner, executive vice president and general manager, mid-market solutions for Sage North America. “Yet, it’s evident that businesses are productivity benefits of mobile devices, so it’s absolutely worthwhile to encourage companies to forecast for mobile—whether it’s a specific line item expense or it’s an official BYOD policy.”

With regard to mobile applications, organizations were less concerned with customer service and more interested in connectivity. Among six different options, nearly half (44 percent) of respondents agreed that their number one priority is for an app to integrate with their existing system. The next most popular mobile application priority was far behind, with 17 percent pronouncing monthly cost to be their primary consideration.

“The construction industry inherently requires mobility,” said Langner. “Mobile technology can enable design teams and contractors to access construction documents, take photos and publish reports all from the field, promoting efficiency and immediacy in their tasks. With so many professionals in the industry spending substantial time on job sites, transporting materials and meeting with clients on-the-go, it’s imperative that construction businesses adopt mobile technologies to ensure they remain competitive.”

Despite largely positive results of the Survey with regard to a commitment to mobile technology in the construction field, organizations still haven’t committed to a dedicated budget for mobile technology and applications. While 78 percent of construction companies will supply mobile devices to its employees, less than 14 percent set any kind of annual budget for mobile technology. Furthermore, less than one quarter (20 percent) of construction companies have a single employee dedicated to maintaining IT systems on a full time basis.

The survey was conducted by Sage between April 18 and May 4, 2014, among an independent panel of small and medium sized businesses in the United States. The margin of error for the executive respondents is +/- 5% and among mobile device users +/- 4% with a confidence level of 95 percent

Complete findings from the study are available here.

NRCA to Hold Semi-annual Regional Conference in Denver

The National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) will hold its semi-annual regional conference Oct. 15 at the Doubletree by Hilton in Denver. The conference will highlight roofing industry issues.

Roofing professionals from across the Midwest and western states are encouraged to participate in this one-day event. The conference will provide in-depth information about the most critical safety, risk management, technical, building code and legislative issues affecting roofing contractors.

Attendees also will hear from fellow roofing professionals about current issues, trends and challenges facing the industry.

Members of NRCA as well as non-members are encouraged to attend. For more information or to register online, visit NRCA’s website.

Clean Jobs Index Finds 88 Percent More Clean Energy Jobs in Q1 and Q2 2014 than 2013

Ecotech Institute’s Clean Jobs Index, a tool to compare states’ use and development of clean and sustainable energy, found more than 2 million job postings in the green-energy sector in quarters one and two of 2014 alone. This is almost an 88 percent increase from the first and second quarters in 2013. The Clean Jobs Index classifies clean energy jobs based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics description, which says that a clean job is part of a business that benefits the environment or conserves natural resources.

Ecotech Institute created the Clean Jobs Index to provide objective job information about the renewable energy industry.

Number of U.S. Clean Jobs Postings in Q1 and Q2 2014:
2,637,133 (an 87.5 percent increase from Q1 and Q2 2013)

Number of New Clean Jobs since January 1, 2014:
1.2 million

Ecotech Institute Prepares Graduates for these Growing Clean Energy Jobs:

    Power Utility Technology: 132 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Solar Energy Technology: 116 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Electrical Engineering Technology: 74 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Wind Energy Technology: 65 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Facility Management: 64 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Renewable Energy Technology: 63 percent increase in jobs from 2013
    Energy Efficiency: 53 percent increase in jobs from 2013

“This Clean Jobs Index really demonstrates the rapid growth of the sustainable energy industry,” said Chris Gorrie, academic dean at Ecotech Institute. “Almost double the clean jobs were posted in the first half of 2014 compared to the first half of 2013. Ecotech Institute is the only educational institution out there that’s entirely focused on this space, and makes sure students are prepared for these available green energy jobs.”

Ecotech Institute’s Clean Jobs Index is an aggregation of statistics by state. Although it may indicate a greater possibility for employment in the clean economy sector, the Clean Jobs Index in no way indicates the presence or the promise of any specific job opportunities. Data for the Index is gathered regularly from independent research entities including: American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency, U.S. Energy Information Administration, U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Green Building Council.

Participate in Community Service Day During 2015 International Roofing Expo

Roofing professionals participating in the 2015 International Roofing Expo (IRE) are encouraged to give back to the New Orleans community by participating in Community Service Day, the show’s home repair and revitalization project.

Now in its fifth consecutive year, Community Service Day will take place on Monday, February 23, from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm, with volunteers helping rebuild the homes of families that are elderly, disabled or financially unable to support the renovation.

“This is a great opportunity for the roofing industry to give back to the New Orleans community,” said Tracy Garcia, CEM, Director of the IRE. “The success of this project is attributed to our wonderful volunteers and their dedication to helping those less fortunate.”

Skilled and unskilled volunteers are needed to help with the renovations. Skilled volunteers will perform a variety of construction disciplines including roofing, interior/exterior painting, flooring and minor carpentry. Unskilled volunteers will help with set up, cleanup and other miscellaneous projects.

The International Roofing Expo will partner with Rebuilding Together New Orleans, a non-profit, volunteer-based program that repairs and rehabilitates homes and non-profit community facilities, as well as NRCA’s Disaster Relief Committee.

Community Service Day is sponsored by Canton, Mass.-based Sika Corporation – Roofing, a leading manufacturer of single-ply vinyl roofing and waterproofing systems known for superior performance with minimal environmental impact, who will be exhibiting in booth #2233.

“The International Roofing Expo and NRCA are pleased to once again offer this opportunity to help families in need,” said Bill Good, Executive Vice President of NRCA, the show’s official sponsor. “I hope to see many of our members participating in this worthwhile cause.”

When registration opens in late September, participants can register for this event at the same time they register to attend the show. There is a $25 fee that includes transportation, beverages and snacks. Tax deductible monetary donations can also be made during registration.

The 2015 International Roofing Expo will be held February 24-26, 2015, at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, Louisiana USA, offering roofing contractors of all sizes and specialties a comprehensive preview of the entire roofing construction and maintenance industry.

Washington, D.C., Habitat for Humanity Uses 8 Inches of Polyiso on Roof

Six passive townhomes that are part of Habitat for Humanity’s Ivy City community of Northeast Washington are including 8 inches of polyiso insulation on the roof. These passive townhouses are designed to reduce overall energy consumption by 70 percent and heating and cooling demand by 80 to 90 percent.

The six townhouses are being built to meet the Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) Passive House specifications. Founded in 2007, PHIUS is the leading certifier of passive buildings.

“The Ivy City townhouses show the role high-performance insulation plays in the built environment, particularly when it comes to designing homes that are more affordable to operate,” said Jared Blum, president of the Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA). “We are proud to be involved with this Habitat for Humanity project that will provide much needed affordable housing in the nation?s capital.”

PIMA member companies—Atlas Roofing, Firestone Building Products, GAF, Hunter Panels, JM, and R-max—donated the polyiso for this project in celebration of the association’s 25th anniversary.

“The passive house model embodies Habitat for Humanity’s vision that all people deserve safe, comfortable, affordable and sustainable housing, and the polyiso insulation contributes to that vision,” said Andrew Modley, production manager, Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. “Passive housing will provide our homeowner families with an ability to consume significantly less energy overall by using passive integrated design, climate appropriate insulation, and airtight construction. These benefits will not only save the homeowners money, but will empower them to create a more sustainable lifestyle.”

Scholarship Helps Integrate Roofing-related Materials into Curricula

Faculty members from construction management schools at Auburn University, Auburn, Ala.; Colorado State University, Fort Collins; and the University of Florida, Gainesville, have been named the first recipients of The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress‘ Construction Management Faculty Scholarships.

Each faculty member received $5,000 to help them develop a plan to integrate roofing-related materials and case studies into existing curricula.

The Alliance created the scholarships though an educational partnership with the three universities and will work with them to incorporate more roofing-specific curriculum into their construction management undergraduate degree programs; provide scholarships to students and faculty; and develop internship programs with roofing contracting companies, manufacturers and distributors.

The first Construction Management Faculty Scholarship recipients are:

Jonathon Elliot, assistant professor in Colorado State University’s Department of Construction Management. Elliot earned his Ph.D. and Master of Science degree at Colorado State and also has a Bachelor of Science degree from the Pennsylvania College of Technology, Williamsport, Pa. He currently teaches the Construction Engineering II and Graphic Communication/Revit Courses at Colorado State.

James Sullivan, assistant professor at the Rinker School of Building Construction at the University of Florida. He obtained his doctorate in philosophy from the University of Florida and also has a Master of Building Construction Degree, Master of Arts in Mass Communication and a Bachelor of Science in Advertising. Sullivan’s emphasis is on sustainable construction estimating and techniques and worker productivity training. He also worked as a project manager, contract manager, and statistician for the University of Florida, Clark Construction, and Hines.

Jacqueline Thompson, assistant professor at the McWhorter School of Building Science at Auburn University. Thompson earned her Ph.D. in construction management and Master’s in Environmental Planning from Arizona State University, Tempe. She teaches Construction Methods and Materials, Sustainable Construction and a graduate course in Real Estate Development at Auburn. Her research focuses on construction sustainability with a special focus on understanding the role of subcontractors in achieving sustainability in the built environment.

“We’re thrilled to have such talented people getting involved with our industry, and in particular developing course material that will include roofing-related information,” says NRCA Executive Vice President William Good. “We think it’s crucial for all construction management students to understand how important, and how complex roofing is. NRCA looks forward to working with even more construction management schools in the future.”

The plan is for research to be completed by Oct. 30 so materials can be introduced into construction management departments beginning in 2015. The final report will include the learning outcome(s) to be addressed by the integration of roofing-related materials and case studies into construction; an outline of the subject matter and topical content that will be taught in the class, as well as the roofing-related materials and case studies used; and details of the assignment used to assess the learning outcome(s).

Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress Bestows Scholarships

The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress has announced the recipients of its 2014 Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarships, which include three new recipients and the renewal of seven scholarships for the 2014-15 academic year.

The Alliance awarded two new general scholarships to Dannelly McKenzie of Columbia, S.C., daughter of Christopher McKenzie, partner at Watts and Associates Roofing, Columbia, S.C., and Shoshanna Lee, of Livermore, Calif., daughter of Calvin Lee, estimator/project manager for Western Roofing Services, San Leandro, Calif.

In addition, a new Firestone Scholarship has been awarded to Jaclyn Harris of Mooresville, Ind., daughter of Albert Harris, warehouse/fleet manager for Beacon Roofing Supply, Indianapolis.

The Alliance also renewed seven Melvin Kruger Endowed Scholarships, including four general scholarships to Sean Cawley of Birmingham, Ala., attending Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn., Neil Hourahan of Saunderstown, R.I., attending University of Massachusetts Amherst, Josiah Martin of Richmond, Va., attending Christopher Newport University, Newport News, Va., and Jonathan Poore of Harrogate, Tenn., attending Technological University, Cookeville, Tenn.

One Fred Good Scholarships was renewed for Carter Hruby of Fargo, N.D. attending North Dakota State University, Fargo.

Alexis Plachecki of Taylor, Wis., who is attending the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, also received a renewal of her Firestone Scholarship.

In addition, a Dan Cohen Scholarship was also renewed for Kara Sosinki of Hudson, Ohio, who is attending Ohio Northern University in Ada.

Each recipient will receive a $5,000 award. Awards are renewable for up to three years of undergraduate study or until a bachelor’s degree is earned provided recipients renew annually and maintain a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale (or the equivalent).

A total of $50,000 in scholarships was awarded for the 2014-15 school year—$35,000 for renewals and $15,000 for new recipients. To date, 110 students have received $580,000 in scholarship awards.

The Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress was established within the National Roofing Foundation (NRF) to create an endowment fund to serve as a highly focused resource for the roofing industry and its customers. The Alliance’s objectives are to conduct research and education projects that support high-quality programs for roofing contractors; ensure timely and forward-thinking industry responses to major economic and technological issues; and enhance the long-term viability and attractiveness of the industry to roofing workers. The Alliance also reaches out to the roofing community and its members and helps fund efforts dedicated to good works and charitable giving.