17 June 2015
- In “Building industry objections to passive house are deeply flawed” Passive House Plus 11 June 2015, recent objections by NAMA and the Construction Industry Federation to the adoption of the higher passive house standard in the DunLaoghaire-Rathdown County Council development plan are criticised. Extract:
“…the Irish Times reported that both Nama and the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) had objected to plans by Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council to make the passive house house standard mandatory for all new buildings under the local authority’s latest development plan, which is due to come into force next year.
The objection of the CIF is not surprising, as the organisation has a long history of opposing improvements in energy efficiency standards…The opposition of Nama is more interesting…The implication appears to be that Dún Laoghaire Rathdown making the passive house standard mandatory would, either through extra cost or the more rigorous design and construction process required, slow down the speed at which new housing can be built. Meanwhile the Construction Industry Federation has erroneously argued that if the passive house standard is introduced, very few new homes will be built in Dun Laghaoire Rathdown in 2016.
All of these arguments are wrong…Ireland already has the highest number of certified passive house tradespeople of any country in the world, and among the highest number of certified passive house designers. So we have the technical expertise…The argument it will cost more to build to the passive house standard is also wrong…At the same time, Wexford developer Michael Bennett & Sons is now planning to offer passive house certified homes in Enniscorthy for just €170,000…But all the evidence we at Passive House Plus have seen suggests it is no more expensive to build a passive house than to build to the current building regs.
…If developers perceive that construction will cost more, they may be willing to bid less for land, driving its value down, meaning Nama will earn less for it.
But perhaps the most disappointing thing is that Nama and the CIF both seem to be arguing for the same quantity-over-quality approach that defined the construction boom of the noughties: throw ‘em up as quickly and cheaply as possible and worry about the consequences later…
But despite all the post-boom talk about upskiling the construction workforce, it seems Nama and the CIF are just eager for us to return to business-as-usual.”
For full article click Here.
Other posts of interest: