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Collaborative Approaches to Decarbonization in Construction

Jun 05, 2024 | News

In the realm of sustainable construction, decarbonization is at the forefront. As a leader in collaborative solutions and sustainable building practices, we are always looking for innovative, green solutions that can help make building practices more sustainable. Brett Banadyga, an Associate at AME Group specializing in Building Performance, presented at the 2023 Decarbonization Conference for the Built Environment that was hosted by ASHRAE in Washington, DC. ASHRAE is an international society that brings together industry leaders, innovators, and enthusiasts to explore the latest advancements and strive towards a healthy and sustainable built environment for all.

 

Collaboration and Radiant Floor Heating: Driving Decarbonization

The presentation was called “Investing in Decarbonization! Getting in on the Radiant Floor” and focused on how radiant floor heating and cooling systems can play a critical role in decarbonization construction efforts. Presented alongside our industry colleagues MacPherson Engineering and the University of Regina, “the conference felt like a perfect opportunity for two different firms to share our joint experience on a pretty specific topic” Brett said. “The challenge ahead of us, in terms of a net zero Canada by 2050, is going to require a lot of collaboration and we need to remove barriers wherever we can, and this conference was a great way for us to do that.”

Design Considerations and Challenges

Brett and his fellow presenters discussed the key design considerations, strategies, and benefits of these systems and the types of challenges lead architects and clients face when implementing these systems.  Brett’s presentation focused on quantifying the energy and carbon emissions benefits of the system using building simulation. The co-presenters Ryan Johnson from MacPherson Engineering and Chris Sawicki with the University of Regina focused on the design and applications of radiant slab systems and showcased a student residence project completed at the University of Regina that included in slab heating and cooling.

AME’s Approach to Decarbonization

At AME, our priority is to assist our clients with their projects and help them meet their decarbonization goals within target budgets. Buildings are a significant part of the total emissions conversations worldwide and within Canada. It is important to design buildings for people; ensuring resiliency in the spaces that are being built will help them last longer and continue to be used. Our client-centric approach allows us to work directly with our clients and major stakeholders, ensuring that best practices are implemented from the start of the design process while staying within the client’s budget.

 

Demystifying Radiant Floor Heating

Methods like radiant floors for heating and cooling systems are some ways spaces can be designed to be both comfortable and functional, while being more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. Radiant heat is not a new technology; it is primarily used in perimeter baseboards or panels that run along the perimeter. Utilizing in-floor heating compared to traditional perimeter radiation delivers the heat directly to the occupants, resulting in higher levels of thermal comfort.

Radiant floors use lower water temperatures compared to traditional systems, so you do not feel the temperature difference, as it ensures an even distribution of heating and cooling throughout the building. Water’s properties as a heat source are highly beneficial compared to air. Warm or cool air being circulated into rooms to heat and cool them often leads to some people feeling too warm, others feeling too cold, and others being comfortable. With radiant slab heating, a higher percentage of people are comfortable, and the building operates more efficiently with less fan energy consumption to circulate air, lower thermostat setpoints, and a lower water temperature for heating. This overall can support the building to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

 

UBCO Skeena Residence

The Path to Sustainability Can be Less Complicated Than it Sounds

Brett’s insights highlight the importance of demystifying processes like radiant floor heating for clients and architects to understand its benefits for buildings and carbon emissions reduction in the construction industry globally. By clarifying misconceptions about this technology and showcasing its effectiveness in providing comfort while reducing energy consumption, Brett emphasizes the potential for significant energy savings without compromising occupant comfort. His perspective underscores the holistic approach needed for advancing decarbonization efforts, emphasizing collaboration, informed decision-making, and integrating technology and sustainability principles to drive meaningful change toward a more sustainable future.

 

Collaboration and Sustainability Are Key in Moving Forward

In today’s rapidly evolving construction landscape, it is crucial to prioritize collaboration among stakeholders, embrace emerging technologies, and integrate sustainability principles into project delivery methods. By doing so, the industry can effectively overcome barriers and achieve ambitious net-zero goals, ensuring a more sustainable and environmentally responsible future. It is important for industry professionals to work together and embrace innovation and sustainability principles to build a more sustainable and resilient future for all. With a focus on collaboration and sustainability, we can create a construction industry that can meet the challenges of climate change, while continuing to provide safe, comfortable, and functional spaces for people to live and work in.

AME is committed to providing sustainable and energy-efficient solutions to our clients. We believe that collaboration is key to achieving a more sustainable future, and we work closely with our clients and partners to ensure that best practices are implemented from the start of the design process. Our expertise in building performance, combined with our client-centric approach, allows us to deliver projects that meet our clients’ decarbonization goals while staying within the budget. So, if you are looking for a company that can help you build your projects with sustainability and collaboration in mind, look no further than AME. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you achieve your sustainability goals.

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