The PH+ guide to greener concrete - reducing the climate impact of cement and concrete in buildings

The PH+ guide to greener concrete - reducing the climate impact of cement and concrete in buildings

Cement is responsible for up to 8% of global carbon emissions, and in this guide, sustainable design expert Jay Stuart looks at ways to minimise its environmental impact through good design, and at some of the alternative, lower carbon cement and concrete products on the market.

Guides

Hell's kitchen - Why cooking can destroy indoor air quality

Hell's kitchen - Why cooking can destroy indoor air quality

When it comes to air pollution, we tend to worry most about things like traffic fumes and solid fuel burning — or when it comes to indoor air, condensation, damp and mould. But one of the biggest threats in the air we breathe comes from something we are exposed to almost every day, but rarely think about: cooking. John Hearne reports on the evidence for how cooking affects indoor air quality, and what we can do about it.

Insight

News

Time to move to life cycle assessment of our buildings

Time to move to life cycle assessment of our buildings

New regulations over the last decade have substantially cut operational energy use in buildings, and with more building product manufacturers now publishing environmental data on their products, now is the time to move towards in-depth life cycle assessment to reveal the full environmental footprint of our buildings, Pat Barry of the Irish Green Building Council tells Passive House Plus.

General

Supporting green building’s upskilling

Supporting green building’s upskilling

Over the past couple of months, the Irish Green Building Council (IGBC) has been focusing on helping those in the industry to upskill during the lockdown.

Employment

Covid may delay Part F competency & validation rules

Covid may delay Part F competency & validation rules

The Department of Housing is considering short-term changes to ventilation requirements under building regulations due to the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on the construction sector, Passive House Plus has learned.

coronavirus

SuperHomes to ramp up retrofit with new EU funding

SuperHomes to ramp up retrofit with new EU funding

Tipperary Energy Agency has secured significant new EU funding to further the development of its domestic retrofit programme, SuperHomes Ireland. The latest version of the scheme, dubbed ‘SuperHomes 2030’, is supported by the EU Horizon 2020 programme. The new programme will run for three years.

Projects

Covid-19 safety guidelines published for retrofit

Covid-19 safety guidelines published for retrofit

The National Insulation Association of Ireland (NIAI) has published guidelines on how home retrofits can safely re-start in the age of Covid-19. Construction activity recommenced in Ireland on 18 May.

coronavirus

2020 feels pivotal for passive house - Barry McCarron, PHAI

2020 feels pivotal for passive house - Barry McCarron, PHAI

Passive house veteran Barry McCarron has just taken over as chairperson of the Passive House Association of Ireland for a three-year term. But he believes the unique convergence of national and international events makes 2020 particularly critical for delivering a sustainable built environment.

General

Passive House Plus sees digital spike during Covid-19 crisis

Passive House Plus sees digital spike during Covid-19 crisis

The digital edition of Passive House Plus has seen a significant increase in readership during the Covid-19 crisis, in addition to the magazine’s marketleading print circulation.

General

Circular economy plans come into focus

Circular economy plans come into focus

The European Commission has adopted the EU’s new circular economy action plan, a major part of the European Green deal. The action plan aims to make the EU economy produce more durable, longerlasting, repairable consumer products, and maximise the use of recycled material.

General

Exclusive: WHO to issue ventilation guidance on airborne spread of Covid-19

Exclusive: WHO to issue ventilation guidance on airborne spread of Covid-19

The World Health Organisation is set to imminently publish revised guidance on ventilation as part of its Covid-19 infection prevention and control (IPC) guidance in healthcare settings, Passive House Plus has learned.

coronavirus

EPA announces €600,000 circular economy innovation fund

EPA announces €600,000 circular economy innovation fund

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has launched a €600,000 funding opportunity for Irish innovators to develop and demonstrate business-ready solutions for the circular economy.

coronavirus

Programme for government aims for 500,000 retrofits

Programme for government aims for 500,000 retrofits

The proposed programme for government agreed by Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party contains a commitment to upgrade at least 500,000 homes to a B2 energy rating by 2030, among a series of commitments on the built environment.

Government

Daikin Ireland launches new CPD webinars

Daikin Ireland launches new CPD webinars

Daikin Ireland is running a new regular series of online CPD webinars to enable remote learning during the Covid-19 pandemic. The latest dates for June webinars have just been announced.

Events

Marketplace news

Aereco joins Renovate Europe campaign

Aereco joins Renovate Europe campaign

Leading ventilation manufacturer Aereco has become the latest company to join the Renovate Europe campaign, which seeks to reduce the energy demand of the EU’s building stock by 80% by 2050 through deep retrofit measures.

14-07-2020 Marketplace

Glavloc awarded Agrément certificate

Glavloc awarded Agrément certificate

Glavloc Building Technology has been awarded NSAI Agrément certification for their award-winning, high performance off site building system.

14-07-2020 Marketplace

New government must support home working - Lidan designs

New government must support home working - Lidan designs

Roscommon-based modular offsite building manufacturer Lidan Designs has called on the next government to introduce effective financial incentives for companies to provide home office facilities to their employees.

07-07-2020 Marketplace

Ecological launch new website and online training

Ecological launch new website and online training

Ecological Building Systems have announced the launch of a new website, aiming to support professionals and homeowners alike to achieve better results from their next project.

07-07-2020 Marketplace

Blogs

Are lower land values the silver lining of the crisis?

Are lower land values the silver lining of the crisis?

While the Covid-19 crisis has undoubtedly caused a huge amount of human suffering and economic damage, it has brought some upsides too. Mel Reynolds speculates on how much land prices may fall, and what the positive and negative impacts may be.

Blogs

Environmental activism - tracing the roots of today's climate activism

Environmental activism - tracing the roots of today's climate activism

While the green wave visible at ballot boxes and street marches in 2019 reflects an apparent escalation in public consciousness on the need for urgent, decisive environmental action, the roots of today’s environmental consciousness stretch back over half a century, explains Dr Marc Ó Riain.

Blogs

How humanity can save itself from itself

How humanity can save itself from itself

We are in the grip of a global emergency. The science is clear, and thousands of lives have already been lost. The public are demanding firm and bold leadership, but a laissez-faire attitude on the part of western governments has delayed and watered down our response, with calamitous consequences.

Blogs

Are you sexist? Creating a building site culture where we can all thrive

Are you sexist? Creating a building site culture where we can all thrive

What forms does sexism take in the construction industry, asks builder Em Appleton, and what can we do about it?

Blogs

Culture shock & knowledge transfer

Culture shock & knowledge transfer

What are the consequences for the built environment, and the climate, of the lack of communication between research and industry, asks Dr Peter Rickaby – and what can be done about it?

Blogs

The first oil crisis

The first oil crisis

In the latest instalment of his series on the development of energy efficiency and renewable energy in the 20th century, Dr Marc Ó Riain reports on the seismic impact caused by the 1973 oil crisis.

Blogs

Higher costs, less benefits - Why the enhanced social housing leasing model is a bad deal

Higher costs, less benefits - Why the enhanced social housing leasing model is a bad deal

The outgoing Fine Gael government devised an off balance sheet scheme to deliver social housing, but will it deliver value for money? Mel Reynolds crunches the numbers and finds the scheme may almost double the cost compared to a direct build – with no asset left once the lease ends.

Blogs

Is it too late for sustainability?

Is it too late for sustainability?

Despite the urgency with which radical action is required to transform our built environment, Dr Peter Rickaby says he has never been more optimistic about the possibility of change.

Blogs

The schism in solar energy

The schism in solar energy

In his latest column on the evolution of solar energy, Dr Marc Ó Riain looks at how the design approaches of architects and engineers diverged in the middle of the century.

Blogs

Is the O’Devaney Gardens deal social vandalism?

Is the O’Devaney Gardens deal social vandalism?

The redevelopment of O’Devaney Gardens in Dublin City has grabbed headlines. Commentary has focused on the low levels of social housing proposed, high prices for private homes, and developer profit. But what is the cost to the state, asks Mel Reynolds, and is this sustainable?

Blogs

Managing moisture: why we must learn the four Cs

Managing moisture: why we must learn the four Cs

Moisture problems are the Achilles heel of many new builds and retrofits, explains Dr Peter Rickaby – problems that can be exacerbated with poorly-conceived energy efficiency efforts, and which may become more prevalent due to climate breakdown.

Blogs

Reflections on sustainable Nordic architecture

Reflections on sustainable Nordic architecture

It’s no coincidence that Nordic countries are some of the most advanced in the world when it comes to low energy design. In this article, three assistant professors of architecture based in Denmark and Finland discuss areas where we can learn from our Nordic neighbours — and where we might return the favour.

Blogs

The PH+ guides

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Fuelled by the need to build quickly and to increasingly tight sustainability standards, the market for timber frame and mass timber construction is growing rapidly. This detailed guide covers many of the main established and emerging techniques, and looks at key issues to address if you’re considering a timber-based build.

05-07-2019 Guides

The PH+ guide to thermal breaks

The PH+ guide to thermal breaks

Building physics take no prisoners. Anyone designing, constructing or upgrading the thermal envelope of a building to modern energy performance levels is duty bound to understand and minimise thermal bridging, or suffer the consequences. One-man thermal bridging encyclopaedia Andrew Lundberg of Passivate, who teaches thermal bridging analysis at Dublin Institute of Technology, gives some practical advice on why and how to tackle thermal bridging head on, and describes some of the leading innovations in thermally broken components.

19-04-2018 Guides

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

As demand for super-insulated and airtight building structures grows, insulating concrete formwork (ICF) is rapidly gaining popularity as a method of construction. But what exactly is ICF, what are its key advantages, and why is it so well suited to passive house and low energy construction?

16-10-2018 Guides

The PH+ guide to air source heat pumps

The PH+ guide to air source heat pumps

As electricity supply from renewable sources continues to grow, and electricity grids gradually decarbonise as dirtier fossil fuels are phased out, heating homes with electrical technologies like heat pumps starts to make more sense. And in the mild, temperate climate of Britain and Ireland, air source heat pumps are particularly suitable — especially as new build standards of energy efficiency continue to tighten, meaning new homes need less and less energy to achieve comfortable indoor temperatures. But how do air source heat pumps work, what types are there, and how much do they cost to run? Our in-depth guide attempts...

08-05-2018 Guides

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