Risto Kosonen
SCANVAC President & Vice-President of REHVA


We have started to talk more often about Planetary Health. Planetary Health is a solutions-oriented, transdisciplinary field and social movement focused on analysing and addressing the impacts of human disruptions to Earth’s natural systems on human health and all life on Earth. As HVAC engineers, our task in planetary wellbeing is to improve energy efficiency and simultaneously guarantee a healthy and comfortable indoor climate.

At the moment, we have some challenges. The ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war and the climate crisis have revealed the vulnerability of societies to fluctuations in the availability and price of energy and power. The need to secure the EU’s independence from fossil fuels and the climate crisis urgently push the transformation of Europe’s energy systems. Measures are required to respond to this ambition through the accelerated roll-out of renewables. To support a fast deployment of renewable energy solutions to end the dependency of the EU on fossil fuels, the path of reducing energy demand, decarbonizing power supply, heating and cooling, and addressing the carbon footprint of building materials was presented in the frame of European Green Deal, the Renovation Wave, Energy Roadmap 2050 and REPowerEU plan.

In Nordics, energy efficiency and indoor climate have been for years in the focus of the construction and real estate industry. In a cold and severe cold climate, it is natural to focus on the heating system and indoor conditions, when persons spend more than 90% of their time indoors. Nowadays, we have realized that climate change creates an overheating problem in our residential buildings when the pace of climate change in high latitudes is two times more rapid than in the global average. This we have lately noticed when we have had during the last 10 years four exception hot summers.

The selected articles in this issue are from a group of scientists in Nordic countries that have close cooperation with SCANVAC and different REHVA task forces. The articles give an overview of the ongoing research focus areas in Nordics. There are articles e.g. dealing with hybrid heating, energy storage, demand response, indoor climate, air distribution, and utilization of artificial intelligence and machine learning.

I believe that this Nordic Issue of the REHVA Journal gives you some new ideas and practical Nordic solutions on how to enhance the resiliency of buildings, reduce the risk of infection, and reduce the risk of overheating in residential buildings also in temperature climates. With the solutions presented, we can also partly help to enhance planetary health and sustainability of the society.

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