The Roles of Building Users in Achieving Sustainable Energy Futures

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The stone tenement is perhaps the most iconic type of housing in Scotland and to a large extent defines the built environment of its major cities and towns. However in the context of the climate change agenda which demands reduced energy consumption and CO2 production, such buildings are recognised to be a particular challenge in terms of both their poor energy performance, but also the limitations on improvement measures that do not have a detrimental affect on their form and appearance. As a result interventions that improve performance tend to less mainstream and it is therefore import to assess the effectiveness of these. This paper describes the findings of a post occupancy evaluation that examined the user satisfaction and energy performance of a recently completed (2008) adaptive rehabilitation project of a listed 19th Century sandstone tenement block in Edinburgh city centre. The project incorporates low carbon technologies and high thermal performance into an existing and historic structure, including internal insulation, a ground source heat pump with underfloor heating, sunspaces and MVHR, which are intended to reduce energy consumption whilst maintaining the built form and appearance. The paper discusses key outcomes of this performance evaluation, which identified some problems occurring with systems and users interaction with these, leading to incidences of poor environmental quality and increased energy use. The paper concludes by discussing limited improvements which could be made to this structure and future design considerations that could improve performnce.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSustainable Energy
Subtitle of host publicationRecent Studies
EditorsAlemayehu Gebremedhin
Place of PublicationCroatia
Publication statusPublished - 3 Oct 2012


  • buildings
  • building energy use
  • sustainability
  • carbon emissions
  • energy efficiencey

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