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NSW home owners survey input needed to improve green house emission regulation tool

Posted 22 October 2014 - 11:46am

NSW home owners are needed to take part in an online survey as part of a study to improve the current New South Wales (NSW) construction regulation tool used to reduce green house gas emissions in residential buildings. This important tool - The Building Sustainability Index (BASIX) -  provides a guide to long term financial homeowner energy savings  and a valuable contribution to the State’s sustainable future. 

The BASIX tool applies to all residential dwelling types and is part of the NSW development application (DA) process. Over 140,000 NSW dwellings have been built in NSW under BASIX since it was launched in 2004, providing a significant reduction in emissions in that time. 

Funded by the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL), the online survey is one component of a project that will compare the actual energy consumption of dwellings built under BASIX with the theoretical energy consumption levels it predicted. The project is led by the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and partners with the City of Sydney, NSW Department of Planning and Environment, the Commonwealth Department of Industry. 

According to Professor Deo Prasad, CRCLCL CEO the partners will compare real-life data obtained from investigations of new residential buildings post occupancy, to the BASIX modelled results. 

“The findings of this study will assist to identify areas for improvement of the BASIX tool. This will inform future sustainability strategies and policy to enable government regulators better understand design options and post-occupancy behaviour,” he said. 

"This is the opportunity for NSW home owners to take part in a project that will influence policy and planning decisions, that ultimately affect how new residential buildings are constructed." 

To carry out the first survey in October the partners have formed a network with over 12 NSW councils in the greater Sydney region; Ku-ring-gai, Hornsby, Parramatta, Randwick, Blacktown, Camden, Liverpool Penrith, Fairfield, Campbelltown, Bankstown and Sutherland. The project will share the collected data for their regions.

Project leader Dr Lan Ding, is a UNSW senior lecturer with 10 years experience across sustainable buildings and cities, building and urban information modelling, and the integration of smart grid with smart buildings and cities. She is calling for all NSW home owners to seize the opportunity to help shape our environmental future and participate in the 10 minute survey. 

"If you want to do your part to help create an accurate model to regulate energy use and greenhouse emissions, then this is your chance," she said. 

The team is focusing their data collection in the greater Sydney area for homes or apartments dwellings approved during 2005 - 2014, no more than 10 years old.  The second stage of the project to begin this summer, will invite 100 of the participants from the first survey to be involved in collecting live data. They will be provided with monitors to collect data on their household's energy consumption, humidity and temperature. 

Click here for the survey link. 

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