The relations between building performance and embedded energy: a new focus on materials

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Through the last decade there has been an increased focus on the global scarcity of
raw materials. This has resulted in international reports drawing attention to production methods, products and design methods within the building industry. Conjointly, regulations and demands affiliated with energy performance of the building have developed drastically since the 1970ies. In order to meet these high performance demands an escalating amount of materials is being used per building.
As an example the Danish building legislation focuses primarily on operational
performance as the main issue for a sustainable building culture thereby negating the
subject of material scarcity. But when discussing material scarcity within the context of
a sustainable building culture concerns regarding durability, effectiveness, flexibility,
embedded energy and material recirculation also need to be considered thus
displaying the existing regulation and its focus as being simplistic and old-fashioned. This raises a question of whether or not contemporary building legislations, regulations and directives are in- or decreasing the carbon footprint of the building industry? Through an analysis of EU reports on material scarcity, directives on energy
performance and international/national building legislations this article investigates how the regulations are executed. Furthermore, it is discussed how they influence architectural design and the sustainable building culture.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLiving and Sustainability: An Environmental Critique of Design & Building Practices, Locally and Globally : AMPS Proceedings Series 9; AMPS, Architecture_MPS; London South Bank University, 9-10 February, 2017
EditorsEric An
Number of pages8
Publication date9 Feb 2017
Publication statusPublished - 9 Feb 2017
EventAMPS, Architecture_MPS: Living and Sustainability - London South Bank University, London, United Kingdom
Duration: 9 Feb 201710 Feb 2017


ConferenceAMPS, Architecture_MPS
LocationLondon South Bank University
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address
SeriesAMPS Proceedings Series

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