This paper provides a snapshot of future HVAC in a net-zero world, and outlines some of the mainthemes from the workshop discussions such as:
The changing relationship between occupants and buildings;
A shift in the approach and objectives for town planners;
A move to low energy HVAC technologies including step changes in controls;
A regulatory focus on building performance rather than construction;
Extension of government regulation into operational energy use.
Following an analysis of the most likely changes that are needed and the most common barriersthat may be encountered a series of recommendations or actions have been developed to helpgovernment and industry understand how the HVAC and property sectors can best transition todelivering and managing net-zero energy buildings.
The largest expected change is that building regulations will need to extend beyond their current domain, which covers construction only, into building operation:
Penalties for non-performance in post-construction are needed to make code requirements enforceable
Building regulations will need to define what “net zero” actually means in a manner that is measurable both in design and construction and in the post-construction phase – net-zero energy, net-zero CO2 or some other performance parameter. This requires changes to the entire regulatory structure, as penalties for non-performance in post-construction are needed to make code requirements enforceable. This may require bonds on developers or direct penalties for building owners or operators. Regulations need to move away from deemed-to-satisfy requirements towards performance-based requirements and verification methods. Existing deemed-to-satisfy type requirements cannot reliably deliver good building performance under all scenarios of classification and use.
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Australian Institute of Refrigeration Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH) 2017
AIRAH undertook this project on behalf of the whole of industry to provide a forum or mechanism whereby the transition to low -‐ emission HVAC&R practices and technologies could be discussed openly and transparently. The topic is broad and the views are varied and often conflicting. The content of this paper is based on submissions rece \ived from industry stakeholders.
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Beyond expensive building and equipment upgrades and retrofits, re-commissioning (analogous to performing a comprehensive tune-up on your car) and automated fault detection and diagnostics (FDD) for building systems offer significant energy efficiency opportunities in commercial buildings.