NZEB – 2020 – Hotels

On Sep 5, 2017 by ghadmin.

Near Zero Energy Buildings 2020 – Implications for the Hotel Sector

Nearly zero-energy buildings have very high energy performance. The low amount of energy that these buildings require comes mostly from renewable sources.  The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive requires all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by the end of 2020. All new public buildings must be nearly zero-energy by 2018.  (Further Reading:  Towards Nearly Zero Energy Buildings in Ireland – Planning for 2020 and Beyond – DOECLG 2012) 

What does this mean for new build Irish Hotels?

There are extensive plans to add additional hotel stock – especially within the Dublin Area.  The directive will require them to be built with low energy consumption as a priority.  If you have plans for development are your architects and M&E Consultants talking to you about NZEB – if not, why not.

Did you know that building a NZEB or Green Hotel – when planned from the beginning – only costs marginally more to build than a traditional wasteful build?  However, the running costs are at least 50% less – the paybacks are tremendous

What does this mean for existing Irish Hotels?

Ireland will fail to achieve its Climate Change reduction targets – 20% by 2020 and will suffer fines imposed by the EU.  This is not because the EU want to punish Ireland but because Irish Leaders – Government and Business – have failed dismally to engage properly.  Setting the increasing problems Climate Change will bring over the next 25 years the real business challenges is that there fines will be paid for by everyone who uses energy – or maybe not everyone!!

What energy users don’t have a vote?

Businesses.  Anybody who pays commercial energy rates will be fair game for price increases in all sorts of ways.  That includes the hotel sector where Energy is the single largest P&L direct cost.

Who will pay the fines?

Not the Government – Ireland Inc will be fined and the simple way to pay it, and avoid cutting government expenditure, is to levy additional costs when purchasing energy – Electricity, fossil fuels, transport fuels, PSO Levies, Carbon taxes, etc.  Because of negative publicity if domestic energy prices increase the temptation will be to push an unfair percentage on to the commercial sector = increased cost of energy for businesses.

What can we do?

Existing buildings (Hotels) can implement changes that will enable them to become more energy efficient.  How you create heat is key to this.  It also depends where your hotel is located.  Biomass (Wood burning) is really only viable outside major urban centres.  Within urban centres Heat Pumps and Solar PV are viable and the new Renewable Heat Incentive, to be launched late 2017/early 2018,  brings affordability to the market – who wouldn’t like to see a 50%+ decrease in heating & hot water costs.

Are you planning to upgrade your boilers?  Are you about to make a fundamental mistake and replace existing heating technologies with newer existing technologies?

One of the benefits of membership is to ask us questions about what you are planning.  Our GRENSupport programme can offer you independent advice on the optimal solutions for your hotel.  Don’t make a mistake by not talking to us.


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