High time India made energy efficient buildings, say experts

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New Delhi, Oct 30 (UNI) India should avoid the mistake Europe has committed by constructing buildings which consume a lot of energy.

It is high time that the country did so as it is still constructing in a big way and is at the construction stage that energy efficient designs and devices could be integrated easily, says Christian Cornevell of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development(WBCSD).

Mr Kornevall, the project director of the Energy Efficiency in Buildings(EEFB) says that buildings--their construction, operation and maintenance, demands almost two-third of the global energy, and this is expected to grow by an additional 45 per cent by 2025.

In India, the construction sector accounts for almost 10 per cent of the GDP, and commercial and residential buildings in India account for more than 30 per cent of the country's total electricity consumption. Energy efficient buildings and utility systems can reduce energy demand by as much as 40 per cent.

In such a scenario, says Kornevall, there is the need of new regulations to maximise efficient use of energy.

He was addressing a press conference here on the eve of an international forum on energy efficiency in the bulding sector jointly organised by the WBCSD and TERI.

Kornevall said there was a lot of fragmentation in the building sector and there was no leadership, whereas attempts to address the issues of global warming and consequent climate change should immediately turn their focus to this sector.

He said the project EEB visulises Zero Net Energy for buildings, which means bulidings as a whole, and not individual buildings, would generate as much energy as they use over the course of a year.

The project focuses on the demand side of buildings' energy and on action within the building value chain than on energy generation and transmission.

It covers six countries or regions that are together reponsible for two-thirds of world energy demand: Brazil, China, Europe, India Japan, and the US.

The project has brought together leading companies in the building industry to tackle the vital subject.

Constant Van Aerschot of French Company Lafarge and William M Sisson of United Technologies of USA and Annee-Leonore Boffi, all members of the WBCSD, who also addressed the news conference, said there were great business opportunities for India to save energy in the building sector and the owners will have to be convinced about the long-term economic advantage of having energy efficient buildings though the initial costs maby be a bit higher.

Ms Milli Majumdar, Associate Director of the Sustainable Building Science of TERI said the conference titled 'EEB India Forum 2007' starting from tomorrow would bring all the stakeholders concerned from national and international arenas to discuss and deliberate on the concept of energy-efficient buildings.

Local authorities will be familiarised with international expertise and experience in planning for energy efficient buildings and in upgrading the skill of local architects, engineers, builders, and others.


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