Savings through Active Energy Efficiency

October 20, 2010 at 7:42 pm | Posted in News from Members | Leave a comment
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Investing in energy efficiency in a building (new or existing)  is by far the most popular measure  in terms of  return on investment. In all cases saving energy means saving money.  The costs associated with energy efficiency measures are simple investments that will be returned in the future from lower energy bills.  

According to Schneider Electric,  there are two approaches for achieving visible results in energy saving  that should be  both considered when planning an innitiative regarding energy efficiency- Passive Energy Efficiency (that is regarded as the installation of countermeasures against thermal losses, the use of low energy consumption equipment etc) and Active Energy Efficiency (effecting permanent change through measurement, monitoring and control of energy usage). 

The first step in any strategy or plan for reducing energy consumption in your organisation or at home is to measure and evaluate the exising energy consumption through an energy audit of the building. Like Lord Kelvin was saying ” What can be measured, can be evaluated, improved, directed – in short managed”.

The Active Energy Efficiency concept proposed by Schneider is broadly analysed and detailed in a  special  White Paper “Making Permanent Savings through Active Energy Efficiency”. Take a look at the document if you want to find out more about energy control in buildings,  the impact that energy efficiency  has on reducing CO2 emmissions from the building, legal frameworks at the EU level  that encourage  and support energy efficiency in buildings , possible technical solutions  for active energy efficiency and returns on investment.


“Romania Green Building Professional” October 2010 Trainings

October 18, 2010 at 12:29 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

On October 13th and 14th 2010 in Bucharest and on October 15th and 16th 2010 in Târgu Mureş and Cluj, Romania Green Building Council organized a series of trainings from the certification and training platform „Romania Green Building Professional” on Legal Requirements and Voluntary Certification for Green Buildings in Romania and Managing Green Building Projects.

Together with the participants, Luiza Manolea, lawyer, identified the key steps regarding construction of residential/ commercial/ industrial/ public buildings. The training was completed by the major changes in Romanian legislation on certification (voluntary and obligatory) related to sustainability in construction and energy performance of buildings and new approaches concerning construction waste.

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and BREEAM (Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method) certifications were explained in detail by Elena Rastei, consultant on sustainability and founding member of the RoGBC Transilvanya.

Regarding managing green building projects, Hannes Guddat, founder and managing partner SOAP Architecture and Steven Borncamp, founder and President of RoGBC, presented the advantages obtaining a voluntary or obligatory cetification LEED, BREEAM, DGNB or SIA and their importance when constructing a sustainable building.

The case studies and concrete examples presented by Hannes Goddat helped the participants to better understand the entire process of obtaining one of the certifications.

Photographs from the trainings:

For more information about the “Romania Green Building Professional” certification and training platform visit

Common metrics for measuring the sustainability performance of buildings

October 15, 2010 at 7:18 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

We hear about sustainable buildings everywhere; some of us (hopefully most of us)   like the idea and understand the need to change how we build and operate our buildings and the urgency to shift towards a more sustainable construction environment. However, when it comes for comparing two sustainable buildings or assesing the sustainability of  a property owner’s building protfolio over time there are always questions, “if”‘s , “no, but” and “yes,but”. That is because there was no clear understanding or agreement so far on how we measure the sustainability performance of our buildings. There are different rating tools and sustainability reporting frameworks but no clear consensus.

The Green Property Alliance launched this month the report “Establishing the Ground Rules for Property – Industry wide sustainability metrics” . It is an interim report that aims at bringing clarity around the metrics for sustainability performance of buildings – with a focus on commercial and other non-domestic buildings. The report sets out common sustainability metrics for energy, carbon, water and waste, after comparing  and analysing different measurement systems  that are currently  available.

The results were fed into the wider work of UNEP-SBCI/WGBC and SB-Alliance on defining the Common Carbon Metrics.

It is an important step ahead meant to bring  consistency and clarity around the way in which sustainability performance of buildings is measured and reported upon.


RGBP courses open in Transylvania!

October 15, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

Today in Cluj-Napoca we conducted the first of  two sold out courses for the Romania Green Building Professional certification.  The Director of RoGBC Transylvania, Dorin Beu Ph.D., opened the day followed by the “Legal Requirements and and Voluntary Certifications for Green Buildings in Romania” course taught by Attorney Luiza Manole and Elena Rastei.  Luiza’s law practice delivers advice and other legal services to the sustainable construction industry.  She is  a member of the RoGBC’s Legislative Outreach Task Group.  Elena is an experienced entrepreneur in the Real Estate industry, has obtained the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Green Associate designation, and has extensively researched other international rating tools.  Her company ecovision provides sustainability consulting services to real estate developers, architects, engineers and other stakeholders in the construction industry.

Luiza Manole teaching the Legal Requirements section of the course

As we will run two full training program in Bucharest and one full program in the Transylvania region each year, participants should be able to complete the ten course program within six months (if, for example, you miss a required class in one location, you can take it a few months later if you are willing to travel).

The RoGBC Team would like to express our appreciation to Adina Rastei, Timea Paal, and Ioana Buliga for their assistance in helping us organize these courses.

Click here for more information on the Romania Green Building Professional training program.


New course about Naturalpaint’s hemp insulation

October 15, 2010 at 3:51 pm | Posted in News from Members, Training | Leave a comment
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On Saturday, October 30th 2010, Natural Paint company together with Greenitiative Association invites you to a one-day seminar, to talk about the new and environmentally friendly insulation solutions (insulation based on TermoHanf hemp). The event will take place at the Greenitiative Association headquarters and will include also a presentation about the green features of the location. Thus, those interested – architects, constructors, technical consultants, university staff etc. – will have the opportunity to learn how to choose a good wood window frame, how to design a green roof, as well as how to install a energy efficient heat pomp or fireplace.

For more information about the location, costs and program, please visit the invitation here.



“Greening our Hotels – Green Hotels in Romania too” – September 28th, 2010, Bucharest

October 12, 2010 at 10:49 am | Posted in Events | Leave a comment
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On  September 28th, Romania Green Building Council held, at the Athenee Palace Hilton, a one day course on “Greening our Hotels – Green Hotels in Romania too”, in order to engage the hospitality industry and its related products and services in a discussion regarding the opportunity and importance of a more environmentally responsible approach of architectural design, rehabilitation and dealing with properties.

The workshop provided practice information about integrating available technologies in the design of more energy efficient and with low environmental impact buildings. In addition, the course was structured so that the participants had the time to interact with the speakers, during the “question& answer” sessions.


First part. Competitive advantages for building/ refurbishing green hotels.

In his welcoming speech, Steven Borncamp, president of RoGBC, gave a short introduction to the importance of the “green approach” in designing and operating new buildings, increasing international and local regulations for building materials and energy consumption, as well as the need for more action for generalized sustainable principles for all types of buildings. Stressing that “green” stands for quality, present and future, Mr. Borncamp also mentioned that for a slight increase of the costs for a green building (with 2-4%), the cumulative savings are about 40% per year, while the investment amortization is being done in the first 2 or 3 years.

Next, Linda Griffin, the new general manager of Hilton Athenee Palace, presented some recent actions that aim at reducing electricity consumption, promoting ecological means of transportation (bicycles for customers) and creating a Green Team, which would be involve in implementing sustainable initiatives in the hotel network as well as initiating a “customer awareness” program on environmental behaviors during accommodation.

David Nicholl- general manager of Schneider Electric- had a comprehensive overview on the benefits of generalized automation systems in all types of buildings, including hotels. Through the Active Energy Management systems, significant, controllable and predictable reductions are being made, throughout the building, while ensuring optimum comfort for residents. The integrated Schneider Electric solutions can lead to constant electricity and heat consumption reductions up to 30% in the long run.


Second part. Financial incentives, legislation and certification

Ms. Maria Daniela Toma – manager in Ministry of Environment– tackled issues of the environmental labeling of hotels. Introduced after 2005, eco-labels represent green building certification, based on 20 criteria which include, among others, indicators of ecological materials use, presence and quality of the vegetation in the site area, energy and water consumption, waste storage and recycling, cleaning systems’ efficiency, information about preventive ecological behavior etc. Specific matters regarding general aspects and regulations of green label certification are available on The fee for obtaining this certification is presently 200-300 euro/year.

Furthermore, two case studies were presented. Linica Stan, manager Saturn Hotel, presented the case of Saturn Hotel, Mangalia, while for Crowne Plaza Hotel, Bucharest, the presentation was held by Melania Secuianu, Administrative Manager Crowne Plaza Hotel.

Mark Velody – BERD consultant – held a methodological overview of financial procedures, with favorable interest or grants for energy efficient building projects.


Third part. Innovative solutions.

Rafael Mărculescu – Schneider Electric – completed David Nicholl’s presentation through an application of energetic management integrated systems. He showed that the implementation of this kind of systems is very useful for all types of hotel equipments (heating/ HVAC/ water management, lighting etc.) and that the investment amortization for Schneider systems is up to 3 years, meanwhile noticing reductions of 35% for heat, 60% for electricity, as well as the number of employees.

David Clark – Cundall Engineering – presented a hotel case study, underlining the three aspects – energetic benchmarking, clarifying the CO2 footprint criteria (design, passive/ active system, energy efficiency and the recovery of energies) and users’ information/ education, in this case the tourists.


Specific solutions

In the last part the presentations were about a) particular solutions (products and systems) for a successfully implementation of significantly reduction of electricity consumption, lighting through efficient LED and mercury light bulbs (Cuneșteanu – Philips România), b) packaging waste management (Lorita Constantinescu – Eco-Rom Ambalaje) and c) sustainable solutions for green spaces design, through water management and special effects for the aesthetic part and for air quality improvement (Katja Perrey – Katja Perrey Landscapes).



Romania Green Building Council (  is a non-profit and non-political association which encourages the development of market, educational and legal conditions necessary in the transformation of the building industry, in order to create and refurbish intelligent buildings, both sustainable and profitable. RoGBC is an “Established Council” within the World Green Building Council ( .


Cristina Şiu

Romania Green Building Council

Manager Marketing & Events

021-222 5135 / 021-260 0051 / 021 – 222 0011

Pallet furnishing design

October 12, 2010 at 9:10 am | Posted in General | Leave a comment

This will be the first short post from my hopefully longlasting series of good practice examples from the design and planning field. Today we bring you an intresting approach to furnishing an office space using recycable elements.

Dutch Most Architecture were commissioned by Amsterdam company Brandbase to design a temporary space for their new office location. The client wished to furnish the space with recycable materials, and gave the architects the idea to use shipping pallets.

The 3 layerd pallet structure is designed in such a way that, besides being merely a workplace, the entire element invites you to stand, sit or lay down on the pallets. This wood pallet assembly is a fun and clever way to recycle and frankly, I would definitely not mind working in an office with this kind of furniture if it looked this good.

project info:
architects: most architecture
client: brandbase bv
location: brouwersgracht 246, amsterdam
design: may 2010
completion: july 2010
number of pallets: 270 pieces
surface: 245 m2
building sum: 50.000 euro (of which the pallets costed just a fraction !!)

You can find the full details on:

Credits go out to photographer Rogier Jaarsma and Most Architecture –


Public Eco Acquisitions in Romania Conference

October 7, 2010 at 3:45 pm | Posted in Events | Leave a comment
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TERRA Millennium III Foundation is inviting you to attend the ,,Public Eco Acquisitions in Romania” conference that will take place on Tuesday, 13th of October 2010, at  Ronda Conference Room in Hotel Golden Tulip Times from Bucharest ( Decebal Blvd no 19 ).

The event will promote the public eco acquisition policy and it’s implementation instruments and will be moderated by Iulia Degeratu from the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Miruna Bohâlţea from the National Authority for Regulating and Monitoring of Public Procurement, central and local public authorities officials, private companies that activate on the eco production/services field and specialized environmental ONGs.

The agenda is available here

The registration form is available here 

News from Cacica. EcoBiblioteca project

October 6, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Posted in ecobiblioteca, Green Building Projects | Leave a comment
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27 september was the date when the local companies from Suceava county and not only learned about the EcoBiblioteca project from Cacica. Through the help of the local authorities, RoGBC organized a meeting with the businesses and explained about the purpose and the intention of such a project. Trying to involve as much as possible local companies is a desirable aspect that RoGBC and biblionet wants to achieve through this sustainable renovation.

The presentation went well and we got positive reactions from the crowd.

The second part of the day was a survey made by the architecture company dicositiganas which will be responsible for the design of the project. We are very glad that we have mr Serban  Tigans, who was recently appointed president of the Romanian Order of Architects, as architect for EcoBiblioteca.

Things are moving in the right green direction.

RoGBC and biblionet make the next step in EcoBiblioteca project

October 6, 2010 at 2:59 pm | Posted in ecobiblioteca, Green Building Projects | Leave a comment
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On 7 september, RoGBC organized at our office an integrated design meeting which  gathered  all the parties involved in the project: RoGBC, biblionet, Corporate Office Solution, WSP, Dexion, B Lighting, InterfaceFloor, Dicositiganas and local authorities from Cacica. The summary of the project is to  renovate the Cacica library in a “green way” by significantly improving the design, energy performance, lighting quality, indoor air quality and comfort of the building. The project will encourage use of the library as a community space increasing visits and participation by the citizenry.   The project will build awareness of environmentally responsible and energy efficient building and renovation techniques and stimulate the creation of green jobs both locally and nationally.

The meeting was definitely a success. We split the discussion in 4 main points, and created 4 different tables;

1. Which are the obstacles encountered and how we overcome them?

2. How do we promote the “EcoLibrary” concept nationally?

3. The objectives of the project.

4. New ideas to overcome the “old” library concept.

All participants had the opportunity to rotate around the 4 tables. All parties expressed their opinion regarding each subject so the discussion was complete from all points of view and valuable information was gathered.

The participants were pleased with the way the meeting went.

The integrated design session is an important aspect for   green constructions, in our case this sustainable renovation.

We want to thank all the participants and for those who want to join this project the “doors” are open.

Catalin Gauloiu

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