Sustainable Renovation and Operation of Family Houses for Improved Climate Efficiency : A Case Study

University essay from KTH/Industriell ekologi

Abstract: In the developed world, the existing stock of houses will provide shelter to the majority of population in the upcoming years. Houses are physical objects that consume material and energy and need to be maintained, repaired and restructured from time to time. In order to fulfill the requirements of the Kyoto protocol and be comfortable for their inhabitants, the existing stock needs to be renovated. Strong disagreement between different parts of the scientific community and overlapping and contradictory concepts make the definition of sustainable renovation confusing. In this Thesis, therefore, an approach of renovation and operation for higher energy efficiency and lower climate impact has been the main focus. Based on a systems analysis approach, the aim of this work is to develop a manual to stimulate house owners to become role models in sustainable renovation and operation of family houses, the Thesis providing recommendations to reducing the energy consumption of their houses by evaluating cost and benefits of possible actions and choosing the most energy and cost effective approach of a series of alternatives. With the results of this analysis, a sustainable renovation and operation staircase is proposed. The work found that it is possible develop a staircase manual for sustainable renovation and operation of family houses that follows a logical step-by-step approach and could result in considerable life cycle reductions in both costs and climate impact. The work also suggests that it is possible for academic experts to develop material in a simpler form and language to reach the public in a more understandable form.

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