Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Effects of Warming Climate on Overheating and Energy Use in Urban Office Buildings

Version 1 : Received: 10 November 2018 / Approved: 13 November 2018 / Online: 13 November 2018 (04:15:59 CET)

How to cite: Morshed, T.; Mourshed, M. Effects of Warming Climate on Overheating and Energy Use in Urban Office Buildings. Preprints 2018, 2018110290 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201811.0290.v1). Morshed, T.; Mourshed, M. Effects of Warming Climate on Overheating and Energy Use in Urban Office Buildings. Preprints 2018, 2018110290 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201811.0290.v1).

Abstract

The UK Government is committed to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80% by 2050. Buildings are responsible for 37% of the total GHG emissions in the UK and the need to reduce their emissions has resulted in more stringent building regulations in the recent past. The regulations, energy rating systems and voluntary guidelines — all are primarily aimed at reducing the need for heating and associated energy use by increasing insulation and air-tightness. However, future climates are projected to be warmer than the present day. Internal gains dominated non-domestic buildings will likely overheat, the adaptation to which will require energy-intensive cooling solutions, thus defeating the purpose of heating-focused regulations. This research investigated the effects of warming climate on overheating, and energy use and resulting emissions in representative urban office spaces in London in the present-day and future climates using hourly dynamic thermal simulations. Findings suggest that more airtight and highly—insulated office buildings designed for heating—dominated temperate UK climate will overheat in the 2050s. Heating demand reduces but electricity consumption increases by 121% when hybrid cooling is adopted to ameliorate overheating. Despite the rise, adopting a mixed-mode ventilation strategy was one of the ways of achieving overall energy efficiency while meeting benchmark overheating and carbon emissions target in present and future climatic contradictions. Current heating-focused legislations need to be urgently re-evaluated to account for the effects of climatic variability and overheating risks.

Subject Areas

climatic change; office buildings; overheating; carbon emissions; energy consumption; mixed-mode ventilation; natural ventilation

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