An energy resource derived from organic matter such as wood, agricultural waste, or other living cell material.
Building components / building elements
The different parts making up the building shell including windows, walls, roofs and floors.
Building shell / building envelope
The integrated elements (walls, windows, roofs, skylights, etc.) and materials (insulation, vapour barriers, siding etc.) that enclose a building. The building envelope is the thermal barrier between the indoor and outdoor environments and is a key factor in the sustainability of a building. A well-designed building envelope will immunise energy consumption for cooling and heating, and promote the influx of natural light.
The mechanical and electrical systems installed in a building that regulate the indoor environment. This includes heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) systems as well as hot water systems.
The use of natural light to supplement or replace artificial lighting.
Deep renovation is the renovation that doesn't lock the savings potential. Deep renovation is achievable only if the overall energy performance of the building is considered when designing the renovation programme
The amount of energy required by the systems installed in a building to maintain the habitable conditions of the indoor environment.
The ratio between the energy services provided and the energy consumed. Something is more energy efficient if it delivers more services for the same energy input, or the same services for less energy input
The amount of energy actually consumed or estimated to be consumed by a building in use. Energy performance can be measured by metering the energy used in the building or it can be calculated by using software that models the energy use. The calculation should include the building's design, location, installed systems and standardised usage patterns.
The protection of energy sources and infrastructure from risks stemming from natural, economic and/or political factors.
The design and use of non-technological solutions to reduce the energy demand of a building. This can include for example adjusting the orientation of a building's windows to maximise natural lighting and solar heating, while balancing optimal natural shading where needed. The human response can also be included, for example wearing warmer clothes in the winter and lighter clothing in the summer.
Final energy consumption
The energy that is supplied to the consumer for all final energy uses such as heating, cooling and lighting.
Combines integrated design with regulatory mechanisms, labelling schemes and financial incentives to reduce energy consumption in the buildings sector. The holistic approach means being flexible towards building design, adaptive to changing technologies and responsive to local environmental and socio-economic contexts.
A material or substance used to prevent or slow down the passage of heat, electricity, or sound.
Integrated building design
The process of reducing a building's energy consumption through designing the interaction of all building components and systems including passive use of renewable energy and other natural sources. Integrated design requires more emphasis first on energy sufficiency measures then energy efficiency measures in the early planning phase than traditional design. The most advanced building codes are based on integrated building design.
describes the energy savings which are not going to be realized due to un-ambitious and insufficiently stringent energy requirement targets for buildings, building element and equipment.
Minimum Energy Performance Requirements (MEPS)
Regulatory instruments that set government defined acceptable limits for the energy performance of buildings, building components, building systems and appliances.
Net-zero energy consumption buildings (ZEB or NZEB)
A building that has a highly efficient energy performance and over the course of a year uses very little or no energy which has been produced off site.
The path to Net-zero energy consumption buildings include three steps:
- The first step is based on the implementation of energy sufficiency measures. It takes place on the drawing board as all aspects of the building's design are considered. This step minimises the amount of energy needed to heat, cool and light the interior space, both through the design and the efficiency of the building shell technology.
- The second step is based on the implementation of energy efficiency measures. It reduces the energy consumption through the use of high efficient equipment, appliances and lighting products.
- The third step is based on the use of renewable energy sources wherever technically feasible and economically viable. The target is to reduce the Carbone footprint of the building. It brings the net energy use of the building down to zero.
Primary energy consumption
The direct use of energy at the source, or the crude energy supplied to the user which has not been subjected to any conversion or transformation process.
Renewable energy sources
Energy sources that replenish themselves naturally within a short period of time, including solar energy, hydroelectric power, geothermal energy, wind power, ocean thermal energy, and wave power.