Achieving nearly zero-energy buildings - A lifecycle assessment approach to retrofitting buildings
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Moran, Paul, Goggins, Jamie, & Hajdukiewicz, Magdalena. (2015). Achieving nearly zero-energy buildings - A lifecycle assessment approach to retrofitting buildings. Paper presented at the Advanced Building Skins Conference, Graz, Austria, 23-24 April.
It is now widely recognised in the academic and business worlds that energy efficiency in buildings provides significant environmental and economic opportunities, but also challenges. The building sector offers considerable opportunities to reduce Europe’s energy consumption and carbon emissions. With the percentage of new buildings representing 1% of the total building stock and the low efficiency levels of the older building stock, retrofitting is recognised as the most immediate, pressing, and cost effective mechanism to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions in the building and construction sector. It is necessary to double or triple the current retrofitting rate to reach EU short and long term energy reduction goals. However, given the age, diversity, size of the Irish and EU building stock, and the economic variables associated, retrofitting to meet sustainability targets on time represents a big challenge. This paper focuses on the current findings on the most effective energy measures for building retrofitting, and the limitations in research on the retrofitting of buildings. Moreover, the paper discusses how the currently on-going research project nZEB-RETROFIT in the National University of Ireland, Galway can address these issues.