Monday, 25 March 2019

Green buildings in East Devon

The 'greenest' building in East Devon is probably the largest cob building in the UK - in Ottery St Mary:
Futures Forum: Building Cob Castles in East Devon... on Grand Designs > five years on
Keppel Gate - Kevin McCabe Cob Building Specialist

Certainly mud makes for a very sustainable, local building material the world over:
Mud brick | YourHome
Shibam-Hadramout-YEMEN- the "new york" in the desert. - YouTube
Thermal behaviour of adobe and concrete houses in Yemen
The incredible adobe mud skyscrapers cities of Wadi Hadramawt, Yemen - SkyscraperPage Forum

If we look at what the District Council has been promising...

Ten years ago, we had the 'Carbon Management Plan':

brown-and-williams-and-carbon-trust-2009.png (1008×649)
Cynical smiles of the day | East Devon Watch

One of the features was a promised Return on Investment after x years or x use of m3 of energy - which many energy and construction firms offer:
Grundfos UK
Energy Efficiency made in Germany - Energy Efficiency
ClimateHouse Agency

But the District Council doesn't seem too keen on measuring this:
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: District Council rejects motion "for the ongoing costs to be published to show confidence that this project will breakeven"

Perhaps we need to look at something a little intelligent:
Intelligent building, definitions, factors and evaluation criteria of selection - ScienceDirect
4 inspiring examples of intelligent buildings
Building automation - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

If you're really looking for something intelligent, we need to go to Italy:
Muse_the story - YouTube

Meanwhile, we have LEED:
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Which is facing its critics:

Twenty years ago, the U.S. Green Building Council piloted its LEED certification, which has reshaped architecture and real estate. But how much does it dent buildings’ energy use?
LEED Was a Huge Advance 10 Years Ago, but Here Are the Four Biggest Problems With It – Commercial Observer 

And we have BREEAM:
BREEAM: the world’s leading sustainability assessment method for masterplanning projects, infrastructure and buildings - BREEAM
BREEAM or LEED - strengths and weaknesses of the two main environmental assessment methods

And again, it has its critics:

The cost and value of sustainability
A growing body of research evidence is challenging the perception, still held by many, that sustainable buildings are significantly more costly to design and build than those that simply adhere to regulatory requirements. Research by the Sweett Group[4] into projects using BREEAM, for example, demonstrates that sustainable options often add little or no capital cost to a development project. Where such measures do incur additional costs, these can frequently be paid back through lower running expenses, ultimately leading to saving over the life of the building.

BREEAM - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There is an even more exacting certification process:
LBC | Living Future
Living Building Challenge - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

But can we get to 'zero-emissions' building?
Welcome to ZEB
Zero-energy building - Wikipedia
Futures Forum: Climate change > and getting buildings to 'net zero'
Futures Forum: A solution to our housing problems: the 'impossible' zero-carbon house

Back in East Devon, the District Council had made a lot of noise about 'reducing energy use' by relocating - and by giving us a 'BREEAM' building:
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project: District Council cabinet meets Wednesday 3rd December: analysis of proposals

But, actually, not demolishing a building is the greenest thing to do:
Futures Forum: Knowle: old bricks vs new build: embodied carbon
Futures Forum: Knowle relocation project ... What do you get for a £15m refurbishment? ... part one
Futures Forum: "The greenest building is the one standing" >>> Why do developers prefer to demolish buildings than renovate them?

And if you can't do that, then go local - as with this charming new-build in Colyton:
Futures Forum: A solution to our housing problems: local materials, local labour

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