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Comfort is a green issue

by mel starrs on July 27, 2006

in Uncategorized

image from Flickr
As I have discussed before acceptable ambient temperatures in offices have a key role in carbon consumption. Whilst letting temperatures drift beyond say, 28ºC for more than 5% of occupied time in summer can be detrimental to performance, limiting temperatures to 20ºC in summer and 24ºC in winter is overkill, as CIBSE agree:

“We can no longer
afford the thermostat mindset when every effort is strained and every
system stressed to achieve typical UK office temperatures of 20ºC in
offices in the summer and 24ºC in winter. We have to recognise that
people can be comfortable at a wide range of temperatures if they have
the freedom to dress appropriately.

“If we can achieve
a consensus that floating temperatures are the way to go, and outlaw
the thermostat mindset – the future will be better for us all. Building
energy use will be reduced and our carbon emissions will similarly go
down, rather than heading inexorably upward.”

via BSEE

This is much more easily achieved when the building is for a bespoke client, rather than a speculative office trying to be all things to all occupants. Market expectations of speculative buildings need some subtle changes…

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