Friday, March 13, 2009

Passive houses...

One of the original Passive Houses at Darmstadt, Germany

While I know there have been many efforts to reduce energy consumption in homes, I didn't realize there was a term for it - "passive houses". Once again, when we see what's happening in Germany and the rest of Europe, it's easy to see how far behind we are in Canada. And every day that we don't take action is another day we've fallen further behind.
The term passive house (Passivhaus in German) refers to the rigorous, voluntary, Passivhaus standard for energy efficiency in buildings. It results in ultra-low energy buildings that require little energy for space heating or cooling...

The Passivhaus standard for central Europe requires that the building fulfills the following requirements:[12][13]

* The building must not use more than 15 kWh/m² per year (4746 btu/ft² per year) in heating and cooling energy.
* Total energy consumption (energy for heating, hot water and electricity) must not be more than 42 kWh/m² per year [14]
* Total primary energy (source energy for electricity and etc.) consumption (primary energy for heating, hot water and electricity) must not be more than 120 kWh/m² per year (3.79 × 104 btu/ft² per year)

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