The purpose of the project is to calculate the energy efficiency of the CUC building. This report includes a brief insight into carbon emissions, the greatest contributor to global warming (Wisland, 2016). Methods to improve energy efficiency in other buildings, their effectiveness, and what improvements can be made in the CUC building are included. The investigation collates the total energy consumption value of the building at 5.0x106 kWh per year, thereby giving 6.7x106 pounds CO2 emissions for the building. Energy efficiency and renewable sources such as solar panels, triple glazing and LED lighting can reduce energy consumption to 3.98x106 kWh- 4.6x106 pounds CO2 emissions.
80% of the worlds energy is from non-renewable sources which has a negative effect on the atmosphere, by contributing to global warming (BP 2014). Non-renewable energy is produced from fossil fuels and cannot be replenished. Fossil fuels are derived from the remains of plants and animals from millions of years ago. They release CO2, a greenhouse gas which is a major factor in the greenhouse effect. The earth's temperature is predicted to rise between 1.4oC and 5.8oC by the end of the 21st century, with changes of 1oC predicted to cause increases in extreme weather. Fossil fuels are expected to run out so implementing alternative methods prepares for this. Higher education institutes contribute by produce 3 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year, which can be reduced by 25% (Trust 2016). This is a feasible aim, having been accomplished by other institutes, most notably Manchester Metropolitan University, which installed solar panels (Team and Marketing, 2009) ranking the university in the top three for environmental sustainability. The CUC building can improve from its current DEC of 65 (figure 2b), having improved from its previous DEC rating of 96 (figure 2a) shows improvement is possible. The energy consumption within the CUC building is based on electrical appliances such as computers, printers and speakers. The amount of heat lost through windows and the amount of energy needed to heat the room also contributes to energy usage. Renewable energy comes from a source that can be replaced. Replacing non-renewable energy sources with renewable energy sources and being energy efficient, reduces carbon emissions and achieves higher efficiency. Improvements considered were solar panels and changing types of windows and lights. The method used took into consideration all the appliances as well as heating and lighting, all calculated in kWh for the whole year. The official energy consumption of a building is given by its DEC.
An action plan was created prior to beginning (appendix 1). A pen, calculator and tape measure was required for the necessary measurements. The survey was carried out by measuring the length of room 124. This value was used to calculate a scale on the blueprint (figure 1) which determined the area of all room types. This value gave the area of the whole floor and multiplied by five floors for the area of the whole building. There are three different sizes of windows. Each size of window pane was measured. The number and type of lights were counted in each type of room. The number of heaters was accounted for, as was the computers, projectors, speakers, cameras, printers and smoke alarms. A television found at the staircase of every floor was considered. This survey assumes that each floor has the same number/type of room as calculated on floor one. This assumption is made due to limited access to the building. Using the opening times, the building is open for 76 hours per week and the appliances are assumed to be all on during this period, as it would be impossible to calculate the exact usage in all 135 rooms. The doors are assumed to be kept closed because they have door closers and there are no wedges to hold doors open. Smoke detectors and security cameras are assumed to be on for 24/7, due to safety and security factors. Touchpoints were considered insignificant because the power consumption for them is unknown. The energy used by each appliance was calculated using the equation energy=power x time (in kWh). The energy value was multiplied by the number of that appliance in each room type, multiplied by the number of each room type per floor and then by 5 floors.
The values in table 2 give the consumption of an item from CUC building throughout the year, giving a total energy consumption of 5x106 kWh. Appendices 2-16 show the calculations for all the appliances. Figure 3 gives an example of the calculation method. Energy usage for each item was calculated using this method. The most accurate value calculated is for the Wi-Fi adapter. They are always on, because regularly turning the router on and off disturbs the signal (Should your WiFi be switched off at night? no date). The least accurate calculation is for the power outlets. It was assumed that only laptops were charged to full battery. Appendices 19-22 show energy consumption per room. Figure 3 shows energy used by each item, with heating being the main problem. Lighting contributes to energy emissions, so less or alternative lighting would improve energy efficiency. The improvements investigated are solar panels, triple glazing and LED T8 tubes.
The current yearly expense is £701,013. On a yearly basis, the most money saved is from triple glazing, however due to installation costs (see below) it would take 17.5 years to benefit. The benefit is noticed much quicker for LED T8 tubes, so are better suited as a short-term solution.
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