News

Climate action plan sets embodied carbon targets for construction

Climate action plan sets embodied carbon targets for construction

Ireland’s new climate action plan , which was published on Thursday 4 November, contains the country’s first official targets for limiting the embodied carbon of construction materials. 

Government

Poor ventilation a Covid risk in 40 per cent of classrooms, study finds

Poor ventilation a Covid risk in 40 per cent of classrooms, study finds

Coventry University research has found that 40 per cent of primary school classrooms examined in a study did not have an adequate ventilation rate to combat the spread of Covid-19.

Ventilation

COP26 house to showcase fabric first, low carbon build methods

COP26 house to showcase fabric first, low carbon build methods

A new demonstration house currently being erected in Glasgow in advance of this year’s COP26 climate conference will showcase build systems and methods for achieving zero carbon housing to the world.

Events

Oil heating sector pivots to biofuels, but green groups raise concern

Oil heating sector pivots to biofuels, but green groups raise concern

The UK and Ireland’s oil heating industry says it has taken a “major step forward” in the use of biofuels in domestic oil boilers, with early tests concluding that hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) works in virtually all existing oil boilers.

General

Architects call for urgent climate action ahead of COP 26

Architects call for urgent climate action ahead of COP 26

Ahead of the Built Environment Summit (28-29 October) and COP26 (1-12 November), the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and Architects Declare have published a report demonstrating the critical role the sector must play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate Change

#BuildingLife: “Regulation of whole life carbon is key”, says Steve Murphy of Hines

#BuildingLife: “Regulation of whole life carbon is key”, says Steve Murphy of Hines

In the #BuildingLife ambassador spotlight series, Passive House Plus is profiling leaders who have endorsed the Irish Green Building Council’s call to address the environmental impacts of buildings across their life-cycle..

General

Draft development plan guidelines a “retrograde step”

Draft development plan guidelines a “retrograde step”

The Department of Housing has come under criticism for draft guidelines which would prevent local authorities from setting sustainable building targets for buildings as a planning condition, with the passive house standard and low carbon cement directly referenced.

Government

EPA launches new green procurement guides

EPA launches new green procurement guides

The government has launched new guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency aimed at greening public procurement.

Government

Passive house celebrates 30th birthday at international conference

Passive house celebrates 30th birthday at international conference

The Passive House Institute celebrated the low energy standard’s 30th birthday at the 25th International Passive House Conference in September. Around seven hundred participants registered for the conference, which mostly took place online due to Covid.

General

Window-opening unreliable for ventilation, study finds

Window-opening unreliable for ventilation, study finds

A comparison between two pairs of households in Switzerland suggests that people do not reliably compensate for lack of mechanical ventilation with more window opening.

Ventilation

Study confirms “systematic inequalities” in indoor air pollution

Study confirms “systematic inequalities” in indoor air pollution

A new analysis of the exposure of London households to indoor pollutants highlights “systematic inequalities” in exposure, overwhelmingly driven by factors beyond the control of those people worst affected.

Ventilation

One in four homes failing to meet NZEB

One in four homes failing to meet NZEB

Almost a quarter of new nearly zero energy building (NZEB) homes may be non-compliant with Part L of the regulations, new analysis by Passive House Plus has revealed.

NZEBs

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Marketplace news

Modular Cork school building smashes RIAI carbon target

Modular Cork school building smashes RIAI carbon target

A new school building in Cork City built by Irish offsite timber specialist Lidan Designs has achieved a remarkably low embodied carbon score, according to an analysis performed by sustainable building consultant John Butler.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

ProAir retooling for the future

ProAir retooling for the future

Despite the uncertainty created by the global pandemic, Galway based ventilation manufacturer ProAir Systems has been busy optimising its lineup of products and putting in place a number of measures to enhance its business.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Ecocel supplying English developer Bell Blue

Ecocel supplying English developer Bell Blue

Cork-based cellulose insulation manufacturer Ecocel is now supplying its blown cellulose insulation to English developer Bell Blue.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Firebird rebrand emphasises sustainability & innovation

Firebird rebrand emphasises sustainability & innovation

Firebird, the leading designer and manufacturer of commercial and domestic boilers, has rebranded with a new logo and tagline to reflect its business strategy and “ambition for growth”.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Blogs

How will we decarbonise heating?

How will we decarbonise heating?

Insulating our homes is critical and must be our first priority, but how do we get the rest of the way to zero carbon? Dr Peter Rickaby investigates the options…

Blogs

When is an A-rated home really A-rated?

When is an A-rated home really A-rated?

Does the energy rating of homes actually reflect their real-world performance? Dr Shane Colclough, vice chair of the Passive House Association of Ireland, outlines the growing importance of post-occupancy analysis.

Blogs

Housing for all: a plan in need of a story

Housing for all: a plan in need of a story

Under its new housing plan, the government wants the state to acquire more land for housebuilding. But why has it failed to use the vast land banks it already owns? Mel Reynolds runs the rule over the figures.

Blogs

On the 3D printing of buildings

On the 3D printing of buildings

Building physics expert Toby Cambray finds himself unconvinced by the merits of a new home in the Netherlands that has been 3D printed with concrete.

Blogs

The emergence of thermal bridging & thermal bypass

The emergence of thermal bridging & thermal bypass

In his latest column, Dr Marc Ó Riain takes a look back at the some of the first projects to address the phenomena of thermal bridging and thermal bypass in buildings.

Blogs

How to scale up energy renovation

How to scale up energy renovation

The government’s target of retrofitting half a million homes by 2030 may seem daunting, but the Irish Green Building Council is working on a series of initiatives to help make it a reality, as the group’s Marion Jammet reports.

Blogs

What’s to show from four years of Rebuilding Ireland?

What’s to show from four years of Rebuilding Ireland?

In 2017 the government promised it would deliver 50,000 homes over the next five years as part of its Rebuilding Ireland programme. But figures from the first four years show it has fallen well short, writes Mel Reynolds.

Blogs

Measuring humidity, the old school way

Measuring humidity, the old school way

A chance purchase on eBay leads buildings physics expert Toby Cambray to admire the aesthetics and mechanics of old scientific instruments.

Blogs

Shooting the moon

Shooting the moon

The concept of building back better and greener, popular early in the pandemic, is now in danger of being abandoned in the rush to return to ‘normal’ — but we always have the power to shape what normal is, writes Dr Peter Rickaby.

Blogs

1970s Arkansas & Illinois prototypes: progress towards passive house

1970s Arkansas & Illinois prototypes: progress towards passive house

In his latest column, Dr Marc O’Riain looks back at two American prototypes for the passive house standard that embraced heat pump technology as well as principles of superinsulation and airtightness.

Blogs

Is Enerphit the key to decarbonising existing homes?

Is Enerphit the key to decarbonising existing homes?

With increasing attention turning to cutting carbon emissions from existing homes to meet carbon reduction targets, Duncan Smith, housing asset and energy strategy manager at Renfrewshire County Council in Scotland, argues that approaches which improve comfort and dramatically reduce energy bills must be front and centre.

Blogs

Planning for passive

Planning for passive

It’s time to make the passive house standard a requirement of local development plans across Ireland, says Mel Reynolds.

Blogs

The PH+ 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 insulating foundations

The PH+ guide to insulating foundations

While understanding wall and roof insulation is relatively straightforward, insulation under the ground floor can be a bit of a mystery by comparison. Not only is it buried in the ground, but there are notoriously tricky spots like the wall-floor junction that need to be detailed and insulated properly. And the design of your foundation often depends on site conditions and the type of structure you’re going to build, too. In this guide, we explain some different ways of insulating one of the most challenging parts of the building envelope.

10-06-2019 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