The HVAC Sector has to act now!
Director EPB CenterJaap.hogeling@ epb.center
The latest report from scientists at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) state that warming beyond 1.5°C will have frightening consequences. Only a global transformation, beginning now, will avoid this! In a major report  released October 8th 2018, the UN’s climate science body reported that limiting warming to 1.5°C, compared to 2°C, would spare a vast sweep of people and life on earth from devastating impacts. To achieve this 1.5°C target the carbon pollution must fall to ‘net zero’ in around 30 years. This is a huge and immediate change. Not many governments have shown action programs to reach this reduction level so far. The next few years are probably the most important in our history.
The European Commission reported in September that net zero emissions can only be achieved by 2050 if member states develop more innovative, cross-sectoral, and ‘beyond business-as-usual’ scenarios. Important dates for our policy makers:
- 28 Nov. 2018: European Commission expected to release its draft long-term climate strategy for 2050;
- 2019: EU governments expected to agree on the EU’s final long-term strategy for 2050.
However, we should not wait for those policy discussions. The question is not about technology. We have the tools we need. Renewable deployment would need to be six times faster than it is today, said Adnan Z. Amin, the director general of the International Renewable Energy Agency. That was “technically feasible and economically attractive”, he added.
How can we as HVAC professional contribute? First by removing all unnecessary barriers, apply the best available technology. If energy for HVAC is needed it is up to us professionals to think holistic, which may imply that we defer some renovation budget to first reduce the energy need by thermal insulation, airtightness measures and passive solar. The holistic approach means also combining energy use and production in a smart way. The set of EPB standards developed to support the implementation of the EPBD reflects this holistic thinking (see ). Thinking out of the box and offering our customers the most innovative and sustainable possible solution. This is our duty and responsibility. In most cases just repeating our existing technical solution is no option. We have to invest in our innovative power and convince our clients that it is also in their future generation interest. We have the tools and knowledge, yes, we should act now. Depending on the projects BIM, Ecodesign product requirements, proper EPBD implementation at national level will support these actions.