Building Renovation Passports

15 March, 2021

Paul Anthony Ruyssevelt

Reading time: 3 minutes

Professor Paul Ruyssevelt (of CREDS) welcomes the publication of the Building Renovation Passports report published on 11 March 2021.

Professor Paul Ruyssevelt (of CREDS) welcomes the publication of the Building Renovation Passports report.

I am very pleased to see the publication of: Opens in a new tabBuilding Renovation Passports: Creating the pathway to zero carbon homes, pdf (51 pages, 1.4 MB) produced by the Green Finance Institute’s Coalition for the Energy Efficiency of Buildings (CEEB) with input from UCL.

Building passports have been discussed for at least two decades, and probably more.  They were identified by the Existing Homes Alliance in the early 2000s as a vital tool to delivering the individually tailored retrofits necessary to achieve significant cuts to carbon emissions in existing homes. Other European countries already have similar documents and this policy could be implemented quickly and cheaply, stimulating the market for retrofits to the benefit of the UK economy.  This new report sets out in very clear and concise terms the core components of a BRP, the roles and responsibilities of the key stakeholders, and opportunities and levers that are open to them. The report correctly recognises the critical role of data and proposes that a start should be made through an “Integration of disparate existing data sources, collecting and storing data in a standardised format, with a data integration method to draw information together.” It highlights important factors such as the need to “Capture differences between individual and multi-household buildings” and the very pressing need to “Address the gap between predicted and operational performance…”

It is therefore important to note that a lot of the heavy lifting for these challenges has already been done through the development of the comprehensive digital representation of the domestic and non-domestic building in UCL’s Opens in a new tab3DStock platform. 3DStock, which has been developed with support from CREDS, represents every building in the stock in full 3D geometry with the space use type allocated floor-by-floor and many other energy and contextual characteristics attributed to each building.  The platform has been under development for nearly a decade and last year the GLA launched a publically available version in the form of the London Building Stock Model (Opens in a new tabLBSM). UCL is currently working with the London Boroughs of  Sutton and Islington, using 3DStock to help them develop strategy and action plans for delivering net zero carbon for their social housing stocks. Using 3DStock as a base UCL has also produced the London Solar Opportunity Map (Opens in a new tabLSOM) for the GLA to help identify suitable sites for solar PV and solar thermal systems in support of the Mayor’s target of 2GWp solar installed by 2050. We are currently working on a development under the GLA Opens in a new tabBe Seen policy which will result in major new developments having to submit predictions of their energy use and carbon emissions pre and post construction. These will be mapped onto the LBSM and available for public scrutiny.

The framework on which to hang much of the proposed Building Renovation Passports already exists in 3DStock and the UCL Building Stock Lab is currently working with partners to develop this beyond London into a national platform. For further information on 3DStock and how it might link to work in the development of BRPs contact Paul Ruysssevelt.

Banner photo credit: photo 5000 on Adobe Stock