Passivhaus: the route to zero carbon

Passivhaus: the route to zero carbon

How do we ensure zero carbon targets result in zero emission buildings? Many cities and regions want to adopt a zero carbon standard for new housing. There are clear imperatives to reduce the carbon emissions resulting from the built environment. However, we are currently not achieving any significant year-on-year reductions and, unless new policies embodying new standards, incentives and penalties are put in place, we are unlikely to do so.


Examining data from Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) as well as monitored data from real buildings suggests that there are a number of problems with adopting a net zero emissions approach. As a result of these problems a notionally zero carbon home (according to Part L calculations) would not have zero carbon emissions and an average new home in the UK would need 28 solar panels to actually achieve zero net operational carbon emissions – possibly greater than the amount of roof space it has available.


The Passive House Trust have released a new research report sponsored by the Ecology Building Society, Kingspan Insulation and St Gobain which analyses the definition of a Zero Carbon building, and compares a notional building regulations Zero Carbon building with a Passivhaus Classic and renewables.


Download the paper now



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