Journal article

Building energy-efficiency standards in a life cycle primary energy perspective

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Publication Details

Author list: Dodoo, Ambrose;Gustavsson, Leif;Sathre, Roger

Publication year: 2011

Start page: 1589

End page: 1597

Number of pages: 9

ISSN: 0378-7788

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.enbuild.2011.03.002

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Abstract

In this study we analyze the life cycle primary energy use of a wood-frame apartment building designed to meet the current Swedish building code, the Swedish building code of 1994 or the passive house standard, and heated with district heat or electric resistance heating. The analysis includes the primary energy use during the production, operation and end-of-life phases. We find that an electric heated building built to the current building code has greater life cycle primary energy use relative to a district heated building, although the standard for electric heating is more stringent. Also, the primary energy use for an electric heated building constructed to meet the passive house standard is substantially higher than for a district heated building built to the Swedish building code of 1994. The primary energy for material production constitutes 5% of the primary energy for production and space heating and ventilation of an electric heated building built to meet the 1994 code. The share of production energy increases as the energy-efficiency standard of the building improves and when efficient energy supply is used, and reaches 30% for a district heated passive house. This study shows the significance of a life cycle primary energy perspective and the choice of heating system in reducing energy use in the built environment.


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