News

New book aims to demystify passive house design

New book aims to demystify passive house design

The second edition of the book Understanding Passivhaus by Emma Walshaw of First In Architecture is out now. The book is designed to provide a brief, clear and complete guide to building a passive home.

Design Approaches

Northern Ireland claims 2012 regs meet NZEB

Northern Ireland claims 2012 regs meet NZEB

NI still plans to tighten energy rules for new build

NZEBs

Campaign launched to tackle whole-life environmental impact of buildings

Campaign launched to tackle whole-life environmental impact of buildings

On the five-year anniversary of the adoption of the Paris Agreement, the Irish Green Building Council (IGBC) launched a campaign to decarbonise Ireland’s built environment across its whole life cycle. The campaign is backed by Passive House Plus.

Climate Change

Bringing buildings into the circular economy

Bringing buildings into the circular economy

Embodied carbon is the next great challenge for the building sector. For the group’s latest update, Marion Jammet of the Irish Green Building Council discusses initiatives underway at both Irish and European level to further cut the carbon footprint of the built environment.

Climate Change

New research gives boost to recycled concrete

New research gives boost to recycled concrete

Results of a new five-year study of recycled concrete show that it performs as well, and in several cases even better, than conventional concrete.

General

NZEB’s effect on new home specs emerges

NZEB’s effect on new home specs emerges

Heat pumps dominate & mechanical ventilation grows, but compliance risks emerge

NZEBs

Grenfell inquiry hears of damning test culture

Grenfell inquiry hears of damning test culture

Before it was halted until January 2021, the Grenfell Tower inquiry heard a series of damning testimonies on the culture towards fire safety within leading building material manufacturers and certification bodies in the years leading up to the fire.

General

Deep retrofit plans: the current state of play

Deep retrofit plans: the current state of play

The need for decisive movement on deep retrofit has never been more pronounced, given the twin needs for urgent, radical action to tackle the climate crisis and jobs-intensive stimulus at a time of great uncertainty caused by the pandemic. In the following statement, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment sheds light on its progress in delivering on the government’s deep retrofit pledges.

Government

Why join the PHAI?

Why join the PHAI?

Simon Bell of the Passive House Association of Ireland outlines how the organisation can help clients, professionals and suppliers to deliver the passive house standard.

General

Ballymore to deliver mooted zero carbon Guinness Quarter

Ballymore to deliver mooted zero carbon Guinness Quarter

Diageo has chosen developer Ballymore as its partner to deliver the transformation of 12.6 acres of its iconic St James’s Gate site into the first “zero carbon” district in Dublin.

Projects

Energy Awards finalists include NZEB & retrofit projects

Energy Awards finalists include NZEB & retrofit projects

The Cosgrave Group, ESB and SSE Airtricity Energy Services, are among the finalists in the SEAI Energy Awards 2020.

Events

Landmark case may empower tenants on radon

Landmark case may empower tenants on radon

A landmark legal case may give tenants the chance to discover if their building poses a lung cancer risk, Passive House Plus can exclusively reveal.

Health

Marketplace news

Strong demand for GGBS from Irish market

Strong demand for GGBS from Irish market

There is strong and growing demand for GGBS on the Irish market, according to leading Irish supplier Ecocem, as the company gears up to respond to a market and regulatory environment that is increasingly demanding low embodied energy construction products.

13-01-2021 Marketplace

Get up to NZEB with Grant heat pumps

Get up to NZEB with Grant heat pumps

High efficiency is a hugely important factor in choosing a heating system and this is a key priority for industry leading manufacturer Grant, whose wide portfolio of heating technologies has advanced over the years and now includes air source heat pumps, underfloor heating, pre-plumbed hot water cylinders, aluminium radiators and fan convector radiators.

13-01-2021 Marketplace

Passive Sills cut thermal bridging & mould risk — new analysis

Passive Sills cut thermal bridging & mould risk — new analysis

A thermal bridging analysis of Passive Sills’s insulated window sills has revealed how they can significantly reduce thermal bridging at this crucial junction.

12-01-2021 Marketplace

Earth Cycle expands into PH education & training

Earth Cycle expands into PH education & training

Leading passive house expert Robert (Bob) Ryan is now offering certification, consultancy and training once again through his company, Earth Cycle Technologies, after a year-long career break.

12-01-2021 Marketplace

Blogs

The condensation myth

The condensation myth

Condensation within the structure of buildings is a lot more complex than condensation in a sweaty pub on a Friday night, writes building physics expert Toby Cambray.

Blogs

Will we really build back better?

Will we really build back better?

As governments rush to jump-start their economies, there is a danger that important lessons for how to retrofit homes will be lost in the rush to build. But there is a better way, writes Dr Peter Rickaby.

Blogs

The world’s first ‘zero energy’ house

The world’s first ‘zero energy’ house

Returning to his regular series on the evolution of sustainable building during the 20th century, Dr Marc Ó Riain takes look at the first serious attempt to build a house with net zero energy use.

Blogs

The science of filters

The science of filters

How do ventilation filters work, and can they help to protect us against Covid-19? Toby Cambray weighs in on the physics of a subject that is more complex and interesting than you might expect.

Blogs

Are we the virus?

Are we the virus?

Taking a temporary detour from his series of columns on the history of sustainable building and renewable energy, Dr Marc Ó Riain takes a look at Covid-19 from the perspective of Gaia theory, and at the relationship between collapsing ecosystems and the emergence of new infectious diseases.

Blogs

Are lower land values the silver lining of the crisis?

Are lower land values the silver lining of the crisis?

While the Covid-19 crisis has undoubtedly caused a huge amount of human suffering and economic damage, it has brought some upsides too. Mel Reynolds speculates on how much land prices may fall, and what the positive and negative impacts may be.

Blogs

Environmental activism - tracing the roots of today's climate activism

Environmental activism - tracing the roots of today's climate activism

While the green wave visible at ballot boxes and street marches in 2019 reflects an apparent escalation in public consciousness on the need for urgent, decisive environmental action, the roots of today’s environmental consciousness stretch back over half a century, explains Dr Marc Ó Riain.

Blogs

How humanity can save itself from itself

How humanity can save itself from itself

We are in the grip of a global emergency. The science is clear, and thousands of lives have already been lost. The public are demanding firm and bold leadership, but a laissez-faire attitude on the part of western governments has delayed and watered down our response, with calamitous consequences.

Blogs

Are you sexist? Creating a building site culture where we can all thrive

Are you sexist? Creating a building site culture where we can all thrive

What forms does sexism take in the construction industry, asks builder Em Appleton, and what can we do about it?

Blogs

Culture shock & knowledge transfer

Culture shock & knowledge transfer

What are the consequences for the built environment, and the climate, of the lack of communication between research and industry, asks Dr Peter Rickaby – and what can be done about it?

Blogs

The first oil crisis

The first oil crisis

In the latest instalment of his series on the development of energy efficiency and renewable energy in the 20th century, Dr Marc Ó Riain reports on the seismic impact caused by the 1973 oil crisis.

Blogs

Higher costs, less benefits - Why the enhanced social housing leasing model is a bad deal

Higher costs, less benefits - Why the enhanced social housing leasing model is a bad deal

The outgoing Fine Gael government devised an off balance sheet scheme to deliver social housing, but will it deliver value for money? Mel Reynolds crunches the numbers and finds the scheme may almost double the cost compared to a direct build – with no asset left once the lease ends.

Blogs

The PH+ guides

The PH+ guide to thermal breaks

The PH+ guide to thermal breaks

Building physics take no prisoners. Anyone designing, constructing or upgrading the thermal envelope of a building to modern energy performance levels is duty bound to understand and minimise thermal bridging, or suffer the consequences. One-man thermal bridging encyclopaedia Andrew Lundberg of Passivate, who teaches thermal bridging analysis at Dublin Institute of Technology, gives some practical advice on why and how to tackle thermal bridging head on, and describes some of the leading innovations in thermally broken components.

19-04-2018 Guides

The PH+ guide to greener concrete - reducing the climate impact of cement and concrete in buildings

The PH+ guide to greener concrete - reducing the climate impact of cement and concrete in buildings

Cement is responsible for up to 8% of global carbon emissions, and in this guide, sustainable design expert Jay Stuart looks at ways to minimise its environmental impact through good design, and at some of the alternative, lower carbon cement and concrete products on the market.

30-07-2020 Guides

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

As demand for super-insulated and airtight building structures grows, insulating concrete formwork (ICF) is rapidly gaining popularity as a method of construction. But what exactly is ICF, what are its key advantages, and why is it so well suited to passive house and low energy construction?

16-10-2018 Guides

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Fuelled by the need to build quickly and to increasingly tight sustainability standards, the market for timber frame and mass timber construction is growing rapidly. This detailed guide covers many of the main established and emerging techniques, and looks at key issues to address if you’re considering a timber-based build.

05-07-2019 Guides

Building or upgrading?

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