Kate de Selincourt

Kate de Selincourt is a writer and editor, interested in the environment, sustainable building, and energy. Kate can be contacted via: mail “at” katedeselincourt.co.uk or on twitter @kate_de

Sensitive passive retrofit transforms Victorian North London home

Upgrading a historic home to the passive house standard typically means leaving the façade untouched to preserve the building’s historic appearance, but the team behind this fully passive retrofit in Kensal Green took a totally different approach. 

New research reveals high failure rate for ventilation systems

New evidence indicates that decentralised MEV systems – an increasingly popular option, now questions are being raised over the standard “background-plus-intermittent extract” ventilation strategy – can also fail to provide adequate indoor air quality, and may even perform worse than the standard approach in new build homes. 

Overheating - a growing threat that mustn't be ignored

As the climates gets warmer, overheating in buildings is likely to get worse — particularly given the modern architectural preference for huge expanses of unshaded glass. But what really causes overheating, is it really worse in low energy buildings, how do passive houses fare, and what can be done to prevent it?

Mechanical ventilation and IAQ - what the evidence reveals

As previously revealed in Passive House Plus, the evidence appears to indicate that natural ventilation systems don’t adequately ventilate our homes. But does mechanical ventilation perform any better?

Hereford archive chooses passive preservation

Safeguarding historic documents and other artefacts requires stable building conditions. Until now this was usually achieved with the expensive and energy-hogging use of heating and cooling equipment, but a new
approach by Herefordshire Council used the passive house approach to conserve energy, money — and the county’s precious historical archives.

Ledbury passive house embraces warmth, wood & light

For Ruth Busbridge and her builder Mike Whitfield, aiming for the passive house standard was just one part of an environmentally conscious approach that put natural, healthy materials to the fore.

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