2019 October 18 ASHRAE: Drop It Low: 2019 LowDown Showdown Winning Design Increases Resiliency, Minimizes Environmental Impact

This is another example of the ongoing shift from an engineering focus on saving energy to saving carbon. In order to do this properly, system engineering needs to be emphasized to an even greater extent using multi-disciplinary optimization (MDO). “The goal of the annual LowDown Showdown design challenge is to model buildings that get as close to zero energy as …

2019 October 16: News just in from China

Jason Quinn reported back from the 23rd International Passive House Conference: “Technical PH people used to talk about saving energy—but at the conference, I kept hearing about saving carbon. That’s a big shift. The conference was as technically awesome as ever but everything in China scaled up. There was the conference dinner (2000 people and a full orchestra) and the …

2019 October 15 The Fifth Estate: Passive House Celebrated at Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Awards

“Passive House certified accommodation for Monash University students has taken out the Built Environment category at this year’s Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Awards held in Melbourne last week.” I expect that in the next few years all the buildings winning will be certified Passive House buildings. This is a great first example of extraordinary low operating energy of Passive House, as …

2019 October 7 Stuff: Regulation Needed To Push Owners To Reduce Fossil Fuels In Buildings, Expert Says

2019 October 5 Stuff: Regulation Needed To Push Owners To Reduce Fossil Fuels In Buildings, Expert Says

“Government regulation will be needed to achieve net-zero carbon buildings says architectural engineering professor Larry Bellamy.” Let’s hope those regulations are good ones that take building physics into account and don’t allow system-wide poor choices. I push energy efficiency every day—it’s what I do—but increased energy efficiency requires better building practices, not just stuffing in more insulation. Read more on …

2019 October 1 Build: How Airtight Do Houses Need To Be

This article doesn’t really come to a conclusion other than the old rule of thumb of divide the blower door ACHn50 by 20 to determine the average infiltration is not accurate. I know how hard it is to estimate the site wind speed from weather station data and then the pressure across the envelope and of course the ACHn50 number …

2019 September 27 AU Codes to Zero Carbon

Built to Perform: An Industry Led Pathway to a Zero Carbon Ready Building Code 3 July 2018 Improved energy performance of buildings presents a win-win-win opportunity, reducing stress on the electricity network, offering bill savings, supporting a least-cost pathway to a zero-carbon built environment, and improving health and resilience outcomes for households and businesses https://www.asbec.asn.au/research-items/built-perform/ Trajectory for Low Energy Buildings …

2019 September 26 New Zealand Legislation: Residential Tenancies (Healthy Homes Standards) Regulations 2019

A certain friend of mine from Canada pointed out to me late last week that the only exemption for requiring a fixed heater in the main living room-sized per the heating capacity calculator are Certified Passive House or certain Living Building Challenge buildings.   See the text from the act: http://www.legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2019/0088/latest/whole.html#LMS167196 11 Exemption for certified passive buildings (1) The main …