Building regulations are imposing more stringent requirements on the energy performance of new and existing buildings – but where do they come from?
The Kyoto Protocol
2020 building regulations have their origin in the Kyoto Protocol, which implements the objective of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It legally binds countries to emission reduction targets. And now, in its second commitment phase, the EU is committed to cutting emissions to 20% below 1990 levels by 2020.
What do 2020 building regulations mean for buildings?
Building emissions have been targeted as one way of achieving these emission reductions. And with good reason: in the EU, buildings are responsible for 40% of energy consumption, and 36% of CO2 emissions.
The relevant regulations can be found in the EU Energy Performance of Buildings directive. It dictates that by 31 December 2020 all new buildings should be nearly zero energy. To achieve this, buildings must meet U-value requirements, and some building components – such as windows and doors – have their own set U-value requirements.
2020 U-value entrance requirements
- External sliding doors cannot exceed a U-value of 1.00 W/m²K
- Industrial doors cannot exceed a U-value of 1.4 W/m²K