In Europe, the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive is a driving force for member states to develop and strengthen energy performance regulations for new and existing buildings. In the Netherlands, 33% of dwellings (2.4 million) are owned by social housing associations (Aedes, 2013), and 86% (CBS.nl, 2012) of them do not yet conform to the European 2009/28/EC which states that all the existing houses have to reach at least energy label B in 2020 (Aedes, 2014). In the last years, the renovation rate for these dwellings is rising at a very low speed, and if this trend will not significantly increase, the Dutch social housing corporations will not comply with the European Commission requirements. The increasing developments in energy conservation measures and building-integrated renewable energy technologies have the potential to accelerate the sustainable renovation process. However, due to a lack of information and ambiguity about the performance of such systems, the decision-makers in companies whose core competence is not strictly energy efficiency related, face challenges in selecting the most appropriate sets of measures for their projects. Hence, there is a need for a tool to assist well-informed decision-making for renovation measures in the Dutch social housing stock. Such a tool should be fast and easy-to-use, yet cover a wide range of technologies, be robust, and lead to reliable and accurate predictions. This report describes the challenges and solutions in the development of a decision support tool that calculates the possible combinations of thermal insulation and a selection of relevant renewable energy technologies at house level. Through this system, the combined energy savings, environmental impact and financial feasibility for a given house archetype can easily be calculated by a non-specialist user and the applied to large projects within the social housing corporation. The functional needs and requirements of the decision support tool were identified through a series of interviews with social housing corporations' employees. This led to the development of a methodology in which the performance of insulation scenarios is pre-calculated using an energy performance certificate (EPC) software, while low-resolution models are used for assessing the potential of renewable energy technologies. The financial model included in the decision support tool was built together with the company specifications for sustainable renovation projects. All these sub-models were integrated into one graphical user interface. As a result, the mentioned tool has been already successfully applied in a project of a social housing corporation in Eindhoven. The lessons learned from the design and the implementation of the system has the potential to be applied in other European countries.
|Award date||24 Feb 2015|
|Place of Publication||Eindhoven|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|