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Regulating for climate change related overheating risk in dwellings

Regulating for climate change related overheating risk in dwellings

Mulville, Mark and Stravoravdis, Spyridon (2016) Regulating for climate change related overheating risk in dwellings. In: Proceedings of the CIB World Congress 2016: Creating Built Environments of New Opportunities. Intelligent Built Environment for Life, 18 . Tampere University of Technology. Department of Civil Engineering, Tampere, Finland. ISBN 978-9521537417

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There is broad scientific consensus supporting the link between CO2 emissions and climate change. In cool and temperate climates such change is predicted to result in (among other impacts) warming ambient temperatures. As in recent years buildings in such locations have been increasingly optimised for heat retention (through regulations and standards), a warming climate has the potential to have a significant impact on the built environment and there is already evidence of overheating in new and recently constructed buildings.

Regulations in the built environment are largely designed to address issues of health and safety. In recent times however, such regulations have increasingly sought to incorporate issues related to energy efficiency while being used to implement national carbon reduction targets at the building scale. Arguably, building regulations remain focused on the ‘point of handover’ or near term performance, which given the uncertainty associated with predictions (such as climate change, occupant behaviour or technological change) is understandable. Such an approach however, in a situation where the current existing stock is seen as a major barrier to carbon reduction, risks buildings delivered today becoming prematurely obsolete due to the impacts of climate change.

Current overheating risk assessments in building regulations may not be appropriate as they are largely based on historic climate data. There remains a role however for regulations and standards that take account of the potential impacts of climate change. Building upon earlier research by the authors that demonstrates the potential magnitude of the overheating risk for UK dwellings, this paper suggests a risk based regulatory approach to overheating assessment based on climate change predictions while incorporating a requirement for adaptation planning. The approach put forward is based on semi-detached dwellings, built to new and emerging standards and regulations and aims to ensure that short term efficiency is not compromised for long term performance and comfort, thus minimising the potential for premature obsolescence related to overheating.

Item Type: Conference Proceedings
Title of Proceedings: Proceedings of the CIB World Congress 2016: Creating Built Environments of New Opportunities
Additional Information: CIB World Congress 2016, Tampere Finland, May 30 – June 3 2016
Uncontrolled Keywords: CO2 emissions; Climate change
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > School of Design (DES)
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > Integrated Nature & Technology Research Group (INTENT)
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Last Modified: 04 Nov 2021 00:40

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