One aim of zero carbon, or zero energy, buildings is to help slow climate change. However, regulatory definitions frequently miss substantial emissions, for example ones associated with the materials the building is constructed from, thereby compromising this goal. Unfortunately, including such emissions might restrict the design space, reduce architectural freedom or greatly increase costs. This work presents a new framework for examining the problem. The zero carbon/energy design and regulatory space forms a sub-space of the hyper-volume enclosing all possible designs and regulatory frameworks. A new mathematical/software environment was developed which allows the size and shape of this sub-space to be investigated for the first time. Twenty-four million building design/regulatory standard combinations were modelled and assessed using a tree classification approach. It was found that a worldwide zero standard that includes embodied emissions is possible and is easier to achieve if a carbon rather than an energy metric is adopted, with the design space twice the size for a carbon metric. This result is important for the development of more encompassing regulations, and the novel methods developed applicable to other aspects of construction controlled by regulation where there is the desire to examine the impact of new regulations prior to legislation.
|Number of pages||21|
|Journal||Building Services Engineering Research & Technology|
|Early online date||27 Nov 2018|
|Publication status||Published - 1 May 2019|
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- Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering - Professor
- Centre for Doctoral Training in Decarbonisation of the Built Environment (dCarb)
- EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Statistical Applied Mathematics (SAMBa)
- Institute for Mathematical Innovation (IMI)
- Centre for Energy and the Design of Environments (EDEn)
Person: Research & Teaching