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Score - Sustainable Construction in Rural and Fragile Areas for Energy efficiency

Guidelines for Integrated territorial Planning:
Passive solar

The following guidelines come from a deep analysis of case studies, norms and regulations, in relation to the local level. This analysis is summarized in a card that can be downloaded in italian language.  The passive solar systems are technologies aimed to regulate the heat transfert between indoor and outdoor (with the main goal of heat the lived room) exploiting the solar radiation and using parts of the building as tools for its capture. The most common passive solar systems used in the buildings are the glasshouse and the sun-facing wall (Trombe wall).  The principles of passive solar planning can be adapted  both to the new constructions and to the renovation and refit works of existing buildings; rather, a large diffusion of this kind of architectonical approach just on the built is desirable. This is very important because nowadays in Italy the new construction works are such rare and lower if compared to the works on the existing buildings.  Most of all, the constructions built just after the Second World War (especially in 70’s and 80’s) are the main type of the european suburbs; generally they display a good structural consistency but an awful performance of micro-climatic control, with consumptions even more high than 200/250 KWh/m2 per year. Only a large diffusion of refit works on this kind of building can obtain good results in relation with the control of energy waste and enviromental impact.  Moreover the architectural value of the recent suburbs is often really poor and the refit works with a bioclimatic approach can be an opportunity to improve also the aestetichal features of the district with its related positive effects on the social life. This is an important aspect for the MED areas with high landscape values.  Despite that, there are many difficulty with the architectural integration of passive solar system because the buildings of suburbs often have a wrong orientation and a low possibility to exploit the solar radiation. This happens so frequently in Liguria particulary in the coastal areas where the big part of the buildings are made during post-rationalist and functionalist period. Another problem come from the quality of this buildings because their perimeter walls are normally made with empty bricks and this means low thermic mass that can strongly limits the use of passive solar systems.  Normally this kind of refit works on the buildings doesn’t show any resistance neither from the users nor from the public administrations because the buildings are poor of any architectural or plant values; some problem can come, later, from the inability of the users that may don’t know how to use and to keep the system working.  The problems that can come from the regulation are more difficult to solve especially when is necessary to make new volumes (for example the glasshouses) on buildings where is not allowed any increase.

Finally, even if the passive solar systems are simple, they need peculiar frames, windows and valves for the air control that commonly are difficult to find on the ligurian and national trade. Moreover they are often unknown to the local labour.  The diffusion of sustainable works of energetic refit, using the passive solar system, could be facilitated following some advices such as:

Indication for the Bio-construction Action Plan

Pursuant to the guidelines written above, here are synthetically reported the criteria/examples for pilot projects to be financed in MED territory, in relation with the specific treated theme.

These criteria/examples, together with the ones resulting from all the themes of eco-construction tool matrix, will make up a Bio-construction Action Plan for each partner countries.

Possible criteria for MED bio–housing quality certificate

The internationally recognized green building certifications, normally give few indications about the use of passive solar systems. The same happens for the most common italian certification system, so called “Protocollo Itaca”, the italian version of “Green Building Challenge” (made by a network of 25 countries). In “Protocollo Itaca” for residential buildings, for example, there is only a mention of these systems, in the sub-section 1.1.1 of the light version. It isn’t considered necessary that green building certifications as “Protocollo Itaca” should be made more complicated. However more space should be given to the use of passive solar systems both for new construction works and for requalification of recent buildings, expecially because of the advantages that this systems give: energetic, aesthetical and functional.

Case studies

Download PDF (Italian language)