Technical regulation for the building stock

In various sectors energy provisions are a major driver for the increase of energy efficiency and the reduction of CO2 – including in the construction sector. The current cantonal provisions in the buildings sector (MuKEn2014) are reaching technical, economic and social limits, however. Further development of the MuKEn2014 based on the principle of “business as usual” would be a missed opportunity. In this complementary study, various methodological approaches for energy provisions are therefore examined and further developed.

  • Project description

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    For the transformation of the energy system, the further development of energy provisions in the area of buildings is essential so that new systems, concepts and elements can be realised on a large scale. The complementary study therefore examines regulatory measures by means of energy provisions, in particular the cantonal provisions in the buildings sector (MuKEn). In the future, the MuKEn will no longer be designed solely for reaching limit values, instead methods will be developed to maximise energy efficiency, CO2 reduction and the production of renewable energies in individual buildings or in entire settlements. Incentives are being created to push ahead with measures to ensure the corresponding figures go well below the required limits. This requires extensive consideration of all building physics-related and technical aspects affected by the energy provisions.

  • Aim

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    The focus study examines the current situation, identifies future challenges and outlines possible solutions. The focus of the examination process is on the current cantonal provisions in the buildings sector (MuKEn2014) and their future development (MuKEn2025). Basically new approaches are sought with the aim of designing the energy provisions and their implementation so they are as simple as they are effective, combined with as much freedom as possible for future solutions. The following questions, among others, are considered:

    • Where are barriers and limitations with the current MuKEn2014 which inhibit social, technical and economic innovations? What considerations played a role when these barriers and limitations were established? How can increased attractiveness be ensured/incentives for stakeholders established, in particular for property developers/investors, so that provisions are understood as an instrument of sustainable, energy-efficient construction?
    • How can the implementation be simplified for everyone involved (planners, building contractor, enforcement authority) with the expected increase in complexity of the systems being assessed? Which (new) planning processes, methods and instruments (BIM, AI, etc.) can make which contribution so that the objectives can be achieved with clearly lower expenditure (and competence requirements) for all participants? To what extent does implementation in planning have advantages and disadvantages compared with implementation not until the operation stage?
    • Which spatial planning/urban planning parameters can stimulate energy-efficient construction and the production of renewable energies in buildings? How can such overarching measures be influenced and taken into consideration in energy provisions? Does the legal environment allow measures which apply overarching to several buildings?

    Basically the study is in the conflict area of “regulation” in order to prevent poor building quality from an energy perspective, and “innovation” in order to enable new concepts, technologies and systems (e.g. also low-tech solutions).

    For the assessment of the energy quality of a building, the energy flows across the building–environment system boundary need to be taken into account. The energy flows in the building must be assessed only secondarily. Possible indicators are the CO2 emission (direct or indirect), the efficiency of the system, the building parts and/or components (net energy), the net demand for non-renewable energies (final or primary energy), the maximum received power (in particular electricity) and the storage requirement (heat, electricity, gas).

  • Relevance

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    The building stock in Switzerland uses around 40 percent of the entire required final energy. The energy efficiency with buildings though can be increased in the most economical and sustainable way – including with provisions that have a very direct effect.

    The project therefore examines combinations of regulatory measures, in particular energy provisions, with which the achievement of the goals of the Energy Strategy 2050 can be supported in the most effective and efficient way. The current MuKEn2014 are reaching technical, economic and social limits, however. Further development of the MuKEn2014 based on the principle of “business as usual” would be a missed opportunity. The complementary study is therefore investigating new methods, concepts and elements for energy regulations and further develops these in future MuKEn (called “MuKEn2025” as an example here). These MuKEn2025 are oriented towards the climate and energy policy of the Confederation.

  • Original title

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    The role of technical regulation in the transformation of the building stock and its integration in the future energy system