What are the parameters a new construction, rebuilding, retrofitting firm needs to observe to obtain officially certified energy efficiency, waste reduction of product footprint, travel etc to reach a net-zero target?
Parameters to reach a net-zero target
To obtain official certification for energy efficiency, waste reduction, and reaching a net-zero target, a rebuilding or retrofitting firm must observe a range of parameters and adhere to relevant standards and guidelines. Some key parameters include:
Energy efficiency: a. Building envelope improvements: Insulation, air sealing, and high-performance windows to minimize heat transfer. b. HVAC systems: Installing energy-efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. c. Lighting systems: Using energy-efficient lighting systems like LED, and incorporating natural daylighting strategies. d. Building automation: Implementing energy management systems and smart controls. e. Renewable energy integration: Solar panels, wind turbines, or other onsite renewable energy sources. f. Energy-efficient appliances and equipment: Choosing ENERGY STAR-rated products.
Waste reduction: a. Construction waste management: Implementing waste reduction plans, recycling, and reusing materials during construction. b. Material selection: Using environmentally-friendly materials and products with low embodied carbon. c. Water efficiency: Installing water-saving fixtures and appliances, rainwater harvesting, and greywater recycling systems. d. Sustainable landscaping: Using native plants and xeriscaping to minimize water use and maintenance.
Product footprint: a. Life cycle assessment (LCA): Conducting LCA to measure and minimize the environmental impact of products or materials used in the project. b. Carbon accounting: Tracking and reporting greenhouse gas emissions associated with the project, including embodied and operational emissions. c. Supply chain sustainability: Ensuring suppliers and subcontractors adhere to sustainable practices and share the net-zero goal.
Sustainable transportation: a. Transportation demand management (TDM) strategies: Encouraging alternative commuting options like carpooling, public transit, and teleworking. b. Electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure: Installing EV charging stations and promoting EV use. c. Bike-friendly infrastructure: Providing bike storage, changing rooms, and showers to encourage cycling.
Monitoring and reporting: a. Energy and water consumption: Regularly monitoring and reporting energy and water use to track progress towards net-zero goals. b. Greenhouse gas emissions: Measuring and reporting emissions associated with building operations and transportation. c. Waste generation: Tracking and reporting waste generated and diverted from the landfill.
By adhering to these parameters and working closely with local and national authorities, a rebuilding or retrofitting firm can successfully obtain official certification for energy efficiency, waste reduction, and net-zero targets.