Green is the enemy. The EPA, CPSIA, AQMD, carbon scammers, endangered species 'protection' et al, will steal more of your freedom, more of your money, and more jobs than any other big government scam yet to come down the pike. And what do we get in return? a 'cleaner environment?' Bullshit. I prefer a modicum of pollution and my freedom intact to a perfect green world where no one can step on the the grass. Sorry enviro weenies, my freedom and prosperity trumps the delta smelt, kangaroo rat, and caribou.
Most of us in the building industry understand what the game is. Green, Energy star, etc. are marketing ploys first, not values of the business.
In order to get an energy star rating on a house you build, you have to hire an independent rater), it cannot be the homebuilders that certifies the home. Here is what one rater explained at a local HBA meeting. You pay him consulting fees and he comes in and checks to see that you insulated properly, then before the final occupancy, he performs a blower door test. He then certifies that it meets EPA qualifications. If it doesn't, it is the builder's fault. Without the consultant, but following the state's energy code the assumed air exchange is higher. The difference between the state's code and the EPA is so small, I don't know why they didn't just mandate Energy Star building and eliminate the consultant. By the way, the consultant told us he testifies in the state congress all the time.
I think this is part of make work ideas. Get the government to approve of what you do and make people have to use you cause you are certified.
Andersen has made triple panes, may still, and meets Fenestration codes. Cost is still king among the majority of home owners, and trying to sell upscale products with perceived social approval doesn't really fly with those on budgets. Henceforth, the need for subsidy.