Leading renewable energy experts Energywise Ireland have opened their brand new showroom in Blackpool, Cork City.
The German-Irish Chamber of Commerce hosted a study group to Germany last month to examine the energy efficiency of buildings there.
The expression ‘from a needle to an anchor’ comes to mind after having spent a day walking through the 17 halls of the Munich Exhibition for the biennial BAU.
Specifications for new homes which fall short of energy performance targets in the Dwelling Energy Assessment Procedure software may nonetheless comply with Part L of the Irish Building Regulations, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland has said. This is potentially a significant development for passive house, a proven ultra low energy building strategy which is often undermined by the relatively crude assumptions in the Irish regulatory guidance and Deap software.
The passive house standard may be acceptable as an alternative method of compliance with Ireland’s stringent energy efficiency regulations, according to a leading expert in energy and construction law, leaving the door open to a similar approach in the UK.
What’s not to like about building regulations that demand 60% energy savings compared to boom time standards, and mandate the use of renewable energy? Glitches in the guidance documents, that’s what – glitches that unwittingly disincentivise energy efficiency best practice and risk causing building damage and compromising occupant health.
Ed Miliband has said that the UK will build 200,000 homes per year if Labour gets into government, while promising to make the UK a “world-leading green economy." If such assertions are mutually exclusive, then they must be treated as hollow rhetoric, indistinguishable from David Cameron’s husky hugging stunt and unfulfilled pledge to lead the “greenest government ever.”
Less than a third of new Irish homes meet energy efficiency and carbon emissions regulations, according to new figures. The number of new homes meeting the rules has also declined dramatically since 2005, according to data released by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland.
With the goal of achieving zero carbon standards for new homes by as soon as 2013, environment minister John Gormley has committed to introducing 60 per cent energy and carbon reductions under changes to part L of the building regulations next year. John Hearne spoke to leading industry figures to find out how the revised regulation could raise standards for both new and existing homes.
Patrick Daly, co-founder of the RiSE (Research in Sustainable Environments) research unit in the DIT has undertaken an in depth study and critique of the current Irish Part L for energy efficiency in dwellings, comparing it in detail to the UK equivalent. The findings raise challenging questions about the Irish standards and methodology and highlight serious shortcomings in comparison to our UK neighbours, permitting substantially higher levels of CO2 emissions from new homes in Ireland than in the UK.
Construct Ireland and Century Homes present the need for Energy Labels before the Joint Oireachtas Committee
The Passive House standard, an internationally renowned approach to building that negates the need for conventional heating, has attracted considerable interest in Ireland recently as energy prices continue to rise. Vivienne Brophy, Dr Irena Kondratenko, Patxi Hernandez and Kevin Burke of UCD’s Energy Research Group look at the effect this approach could have on cutting Ireland’s energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
As our recognition of the problems of dwindling fossil fuel supplies and climate change grows, the need to reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions of our homes becomes increasingly apparent. Leading energy consultant Patrick Waterfield describes why and how we should switch to zero heating homes.