nZEB in Warm/Mediterranean climates

TaskForce Workshops & Study Visits

Workshop and Study Visit in Marseille - 19-20 March 2015

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On the 19th March 2014, the members of the POWER HOUSE Warm/Mediterranean Climates TaskForce met in Marseille to present to the management and technical staff of the Association Régionale Hlm PACA & Corse the TaskForce’s findings and exchange information about Mediterranean bioclimatic architectural principles.

During the Workshop, the regional scheme in place to finance the energy refurbishment of the Social Housing stock (plan RHEA hlm) was explained in details; the programme, with a budget of 60 million € over 4 years will allow the energy refurbishment of 25.000 dwellings in the PACA (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur) region. To conclude, the French colleagues presented the results of a survey carried out in the PACA region in 2014 on the energy and environmental performance on a sample of 93 new social housing projects equivalent to 3.211 dwellings (download here the presentations made during the Workshop).

The following day, participants had the opportunity to visit one new-construction housing project “Résidence Valtellina” in Chateauneuf-les-Martigues, consisting in 4 buildings for a total of 117 dwellings. The complex, managed by Logirem, was built in observance of bioclimatic principles to nearly-Zero Energy Standards (BBC, bâtiment de basse consommation according to French regulation). The study visit continued to two refurbishments projects in Vitrolles, where 122 dwellings were refurbished by Logirem and other 125 by Famille et Provence to high energy standards.

To find out more, please watch the video of the Study Visits!

Workshop and Study Visit in Barcelona - 13-14 February 2014

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On the 13th February 2014, the members of the nearly-Zero Energy Challenge Warm/Mediterranean Climates TaskForce met in Barcelona to discuss about tools available to finance energy efficiency in social housing.

The first part of the event (attended by some 90 participants) was mainly dedicated to the opportunities offered by the EU, particularly by the Structural Funds for the new programming period 2014-2020 as well as by other supporting schemes and programmes in place, including the Horizon2020 Call for Proposals recently launched. The second part focused on the schemes used in Spain, France and Italy with some concrete example of large refurbishment and new-build projects (download here the presentations made during the Workshop).

The following day, beside discussing internal issues, TaskForce Members worked on the finalisation of the “Mediterranean House Manifesto”, a document in 10 points that describes how the TaskForce intends a nearly-Zero Energy Building designed for Mediterranean climates (download here the final version of the “Mediterranean House Manifesto”).

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To complement the Workshop on “Financing opportunities for Energy Efficiency in Housing” held in the morning, the Spanish Member of the nearly-Zero Energy Challenge Warm/Mediterranean Climates TaskForce organised on 13 February 2014 a study visit in Barcelona to three housing projects managed by the Patronat Municipal de l’Habitatge de Barcelona (PMHB): “Roc Boronat” (95 dwellings - building connect to the first district heating/cooling network “Districlima”), “Can Cortada” (160 dwellings - energy classification B) and “Trinitat Nova” (refurbishment project of 180 dwellings). During the visits, participants has the opportunity to interact with architects and engineers and hear from them about the measure adopted to achieve such high energy standards.

To find out more, please watch the video of the Study Visits!

As result of the event, the report “Financing opportunities for energy efficiency in housing” was drafted in order to highlight the discussions and outcomes from the conference and study visit held. The report concludes with some recommendations for social housing providers in warm/Mediterranean climates in order for them to take advantage of the finance opportunities in energy efficiency offered by the EU and other schemes available in their countries.

In a nutshell, the existing financial mechanisms that were presented at the conference show further possibilities of improving the energy efficiency  of buildings in combination with the EU structural funds.  In particular, Energy Performance Contracting through ESCOs or public third-party investment operators, has the potential to develop and stimulate the market for the deep renovation of buildings. As the EPC is generally suitable for financing energy efficiency measures with short or medium payback, combining this with EU finance instruments and other financial schemes could support comprehensive energy efficiency projects with longer payback periods. There is, therefore, a need to improve the framework conditions for utilising EPC and other finance instruments and for housing providers to further explore the full use of these financial mechanisms in deep renovation projects.

Download here the report “Financing opportunities for energy efficiency in housing”.

Workshop and Study Visit in Pisa & Empoli - 4-5 July 2013

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In the framework of the Green City Energy initiative, a seminar organised by the Warm/Mediterranean countries TaskForce Coordinators was held on 4-5 July 2013 in Pisa, Italy. The purpose of the seminar, attended by some 20 participants mainly from Italy and Spain, was to strengthen the collaboration with other running EU-funded projects in the MED area (such as ELIH-MED, MARIE, Urban Empathy RELS and CAT MED), in order to capitalise on them, develop synergies and make sure that the information available will be feeding the future work of the TaskForce. The meeting also set the basis for a discussion that will lead to the definition of a common Manifesto on how the Public, Cooperative and Social Housing sector intend nearly-Zero Energy homes in Mediterranean climates (download here the presentations made during the Workshop).

The seminar ended with the presentation of some exemplary low energy buildings in Spain and Italy, followed by a study visit to five public-owned low-energy housing projects in Pisa and Empoli area, run by APES Pisa and Publicasa.

Along with the above-mentioned site visits, participants also had the opportunity to visit the ‘Centro Ricerche TQV’, a centre for the development of integrated technologies and the nanoScience &Technology lab of the Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa. This helped participants to have an insight on the technologies available to improve the quality of life of elderly and disabled people in homes as well as an insight on cutting-edge technologies and insulation materials to improve the energy efficiency of our housing stock.

To find out more, please watch the video of the Workshop and Study Visits!