3.4 Active cooling
With the predicted increase in temperature due to global warming the need to adapt buildings to prevent overheating and to ensure a comfortable internal environment will become increasingly important.
One response to discomfort is to install air conditioning and the problem is that cooling systems increase greenhouse gas emissions and require additional energy to run as well as capital and maintenance costs.
Inclusion of active cooling should be carefully considered against all practical measures to reduce the need for active cooling to include;
- Clear understanding of internal temperatures and a specific requirement for cooling.
- Alternatives to active cooling such as natural ventilation and solar shading, which though may have similar capital costs will have zero greenhouse gas emissions.
- Consideration of changes to finishes or increased insulation.
Active cooling should only be considered as a last resort.
Useful links for guidance are;