International Partnership for Energy Efficiency Cooperation (IPEEC) signed by the worlds wealthiest economies

May 26, 2009 at 10:41 am | Posted in General | Leave a comment

The international energy producing and consuming mammoths signed yesterday a partnership agreement towards energy efficiency. The EU, USA, UK, Russia, China, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, South Korea, but also, Brazil and Mexico adhered to the document facilitating an international high level policy discussion, during the G8 Summit in Rome.

The agreement was initiated by the EU in June 2007, during Heiligendamm Summit and was finalized in 2008, during the Japanese G8 presidency. The countries signing this year’s agreement hold as much as 80% of the world’s supply and demand of energy.

Alina Kartman –

New EPBD sets bold standards for energy efficiency in constructions

May 26, 2009 at 8:00 am | Posted in General, Legislative Outreach | Leave a comment

Significant market shifts are expected to happen in the green building sector with the new Energy Performance in Building Directive (EPBD) being approved by the European Parliament, earlier this April. Following a likely adoption by the Council of Ministers, each Member state must transpose the directive into national legislation and draft new laws, action plans, and strategies to accomplish the set targets. The goal is having all Member states ensure that all new buildings are at least “net zero energy” buildings by 31 st of December 2016. In order to accomplish that goal, member states shall set targets for the minimum percentage of buildings, which will be, by 2015 and 2020 respectively, net zero energy buildings, measured as a percentage of the total number of buildings and as a percentage in relation to the total useful floor are.

In addition, separate targets should be set for buildings occupied by public authorities – that should be at least three years before the above mentioned targets. The Directive also addresses the need of a common methodology for calculating energy performance in buildings. Therefore, it requires all Member states to draft such a methodology by March 31st, 2010. As a background information, currently there are significant differences between the different calculation methodologies from different member states that make possible that in some countries – ex. Germany, Austria – the energy certificate is stronger because it imposes higher standards than in other countries.

Also, the Directive suggests that the Member states apply both technical and financial measures. First, the member states should encourage the usage of high efficiency alternative systems based on energy from renewable sources, cogeneration, district or block heating or cooling, heat pumps, and ICT equipment for monitoring and control purposes. Second, the should reduce existing legal and market barriers and develop existing and new financial and fiscal instruments to increase the energy efficiency of new and existing buildings. The latter should be set by all Member States, by June 30th, 2011.

The EPBD is the major piece of legislation whose implementation has a direct effect on creating the market conditions that are relevant for the development of green buildings in Romania.

The text of the directive, in its EP approved form is available for further study here.

Demonstrative workshop with Naturalpaint

May 25, 2009 at 12:44 pm | Posted in Events, Member Projects, News from Members | Leave a comment

Last Friday, May 22, the RoGBC hosted a demonstrative workshop conducted by the ecological paints supplier Naturalpaint. The participants were able to assist a short presentation about the advantages of using natural paints and had the opportunity to test the products themselves, on different types of surfaces.

As the Naturalpaint representatives answered all the questions that arose during the demonstration, the discussion went from the usefulness of the 100% natural ingredients to the price of the products, but also to the collaboration opportunities.

Lehel Lucacz, commercial director for Naturalpaint, draw the participants’ attention to the fact that ecological paints are an intelligent alternative to traditional synthetic paints, firstly because of the advantages they present to health. In this context, Lucacz recommended the use of natural paints especially for painting children’s rooms, given the fact that their health can be very fragile during the first months of life. Hans-Christian Petersen, general director of Naturalpaint, also brought into the discussion the health of the workers that need to be protected from daily inhaling the vapors emitted by synthetic paints.

“What is even more”, says Lucacz, „natural paints are environmentally friendly, since the raw materials they have in their composition originate from renewable sources and are prepared according to simple procedures that do not produce toxic remains.”

„It is true that the prices are higher than in the case of traditional paints“ Lehel Lucacz said, but reminded also that the capacity of surface covering is also higher. Petersen added that „being exclusively produced in the German factory, the Naturalpaint products are marked by the renowned German quality.“

Alina Kartman –

Launch of the EEB report: Energy Efficiency in Buildings: Transforming the Market

May 6, 2009 at 4:11 pm | Posted in Events, General | Leave a comment
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EEB ReportThe World Business Council for Sustainable Development ‘Energy Efficiency in Buildings’ research project member companies provided speaker’s to last year’s “Build Green CEE” conference in Bucharest.  This research is the next installment of their comprehensive study.

The new modeling by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) shows how energy use in buildings can be cut by 60 percent by 2050 – essential to meeting global climate change targets – but this will require immediate action to transform the building sector. This is the central message of the report from the WBCSD’s four-year, $15 million Energy Efficiency in Buildings (EEB) research project, the most rigorous study ever conducted on the subject.

The research took a bottom-up, market-driven approach to understanding the barriers to lower energy use, based on the most detailed view ever of the current state of energy demand in buildings. Energy use by building type was analyzed for millions of existing and new buildings and projected out to 2050, accounting for differences such as climate and building design. Using computer simulations, researchers were able to show the market response to various combinations of financial, technical, behavioral and policy options, identifying the optimum mix to achieve transformation for each market studied. The project’s resulting report makes six principle recommendations:

  • Strengthen building codes and energy labeling for increased transparency.
  • Incentivize energy-efficient investments.
  • Encourage integrated design approaches and innovations.
  • Develop and use advanced technology to enable energy-saving behavior.
  • Develop workforce capacity for energy saving.
  • Mobilize for an energy-aware culture.

The EEB report is available for download here:

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