A summary of the UKIEG Conference, 16th June 2016

We had a great day at the 2016 UKIEG Conference, kindly hosted by the excellent team at Coventry University.

Dr Marcella Ucci informed us that UKIEG now has 242 members. However, it is challenging for them to effect policy, as no one government department leads on IAQ. UKIEG provided evidence to the APPG Design and Innovation, with a report due in November 2016. UKIEG joined the new HEMAC Network and will attend a policy workshop in July. (Please see our news article onHEMAC).

Domini Gunn, Director of Director of Health and Wellbeing at CIH, reminded us that the average first time buyer for a home is now 41 years old; most ‘Right to Buy’ applications are by the over 55s; and four out of 10 consider they will never own their own home. We have 3.6m children and 2m pensioners living in unfit accommodation. Some 96% of older households live in mainstream housing and cost 40% of the NHS budget. It has now been recognised that housing is a health related function.

Dr Araz Agha, Coventry University, informed us that Homewise declare that there is 60% dissatisfaction rate with new build housing, with 1 in 10 of new housing having problems. This is probably the only market where only 1 in 4 consumers choose a new product. The average size of our homes has also dropped to 76m2.

Simon Corbey, ASBP, discussed the role of products for healthy buildings. You can view Simon’s presentation here.

Richard Daniels, Technical Manager, Education Funding Agency, introduced Building Bulletin 101, which contains guidance for school design on acoustics, lighting and ventilation, which he suggested goes beyond Building Regulations. Richard suggested that they have now included climate based daylight modelling and adaptive thermal comfort criteria. He informed us that in the UK we have only have 1.72m2 per pupil with the European average 20m2/ pupil. He reminded us that we have one of the highest rates of asthma in the UK with 10% of children suffering with the complaint.

Dr Azadeh Montazami, Coventry University, presented an interesting matrix for IAQ and went on to present post occupation studies of a range of schools by Architype. They have been designing schools to Passivhaus and low energy standards for the last 10 years, continually monitoring, learning and refining their designs.

Tom Cox, St Gobain, introduced the Multi Comfort concept which commenced 10 years ago. He informed us that St Gobain spend €500 p.a on R&D and that St Gobain Habitat has no allegiances with any particular products. He discussed King’s Hawford School, the first school building in the UK designed to the Multi Comfort criteria. The school will be monitored for 24 months, with data collected across VOCs, formaldehyde, CO, CO2, temperature and humidity. A mix of qualitative and qualitative data will be analysed to quantify the success of the enhanced internal environment.

Monica Mateo-Garcia, Coventry University, introduced the RESSEEPE project, which includes renovation of the George Elliot Building and the John Laing Building on the university campus. The core idea of the RESSEEPE project is to technically advance, adapt, demonstrate and assess a number of innovative retrofit technologies. Reductions in the area of 50% will be achieved in terms of energy consumption. Monica discussed the range of strategies involved. Of particular interest was the use of phase change materials in the ceiling of the John Laing Building, which has had an impact in reducing maximum internal temperatures by an average 2°C.

We then had poster presentations from Allergy UK, Tom Woolley on his new book and Tom Cudmore on occupant productivity, plus many more.

This was followed by a whirlwind tour around the Engineering and Computing Low Impact Building. The design of the building was inspired by bees in the hive, with hexagons repeated throughout the façade. We went up on the roof and saw their solar PV test bed and a stunning green roof. Internally, an open, passive stack design and exposed thermal mass has provided an excellent internal environment.

The UK Indoor Environments Group (UKIEG) was launched in 2003, with the aim to co-ordinate and provide a focus for UK activity concerned with improving indoor environments for people.

For more information about UKIEG, visit http://www.ukieg.org.

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