skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Building Energy Efficiency in India: Compliance Evaluation of Energy Conservation Building Code

Abstract

India is experiencing unprecedented construction boom. The country doubled its floorspace between 2001 and 2005 and is expected to add 35 billion m2 of new buildings by 2050. Buildings account for 35% of total final energy consumption in India today, and building energy use is growing at 8% annually. Studies have shown that carbon policies will have little effect on reducing building energy demand. Chaturvedi et al. predicted that, if there is no specific sectoral policies to curb building energy use, final energy demand of the Indian building sector will grow over five times by the end of this century, driven by rapid income and population growth. The growing energy demand in buildings is accompanied by a transition from traditional biomass to commercial fuels, particularly an increase in electricity use. This also leads to a rapid increase in carbon emissions and aggravates power shortage in India. Growth in building energy use poses challenges to the Indian government. To curb energy consumption in buildings, the Indian government issued the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) in 2007, which applies to commercial buildings with a connected load of 100 kW or 120kVA. It is predicted that the implementation of ECBC can help savemore » 25-40% of energy, compared to reference buildings without energy-efficiency measures. However, the impact of ECBC depends on the effectiveness of its enforcement and compliance. Currently, the majority of buildings in India are not ECBC-compliant. The United Nations Development Programme projected that code compliance in India would reach 35% by 2015 and 64% by 2017. Whether the projected targets can be achieved depends on how the code enforcement system is designed and implemented. Although the development of ECBC lies in the hands of the national government – the Bureau of Energy Efficiency under the Ministry of Power, the adoption and implementation of ECBC largely relies on state and local governments. Six years after ECBC’s enactment, only two states and one territory out of 35 Indian states and union territories formally adopted ECBC and six additional states are in the legislative process of approving ECBC. There are several barriers that slow down the process. First, stakeholders, such as architects, developers, and state and local governments, lack awareness of building energy efficiency, and do not have enough capacity and resources to implement ECBC. Second, institution for implementing ECBC is not set up yet; ECBC is not included in local building by-laws or incorporated into the building permit process. Third, there is not a systematic approach to measuring and verifying compliance and energy savings, and thus the market does not have enough confidence in ECBC. Energy codes achieve energy savings only when projects comply with codes, yet only few countries measure compliance consistently and periodic checks often indicate poor compliance in many jurisdictions. China and the U.S. appear to be two countries with comprehensive systems in code enforcement and compliance The United States recently developed methodologies measuring compliance with building energy codes at the state level. China has an annual survey investigating code compliance rate at the design and construction stages in major cities. Like many developing countries, India has only recently begun implementing an energy code and would benefit from international experience on code compliance. In this paper, we examine lessons learned from the U.S. and China on compliance assessment and how India can apply these lessons to develop its own compliance evaluation approach. This paper also provides policy suggestions to national, state, and local governments to improve compliance and speed up ECBC implementation.« less

Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1128633
Report Number(s):
PNNL-23217
PG0500000
DOE Contract Number:
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
India, ECBC, Code Compliance Evaluation

Citation Formats

Yu, Sha, Evans, Meredydd, and Delgado, Alison. Building Energy Efficiency in India: Compliance Evaluation of Energy Conservation Building Code. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.2172/1128633.
Yu, Sha, Evans, Meredydd, & Delgado, Alison. Building Energy Efficiency in India: Compliance Evaluation of Energy Conservation Building Code. United States. doi:10.2172/1128633.
Yu, Sha, Evans, Meredydd, and Delgado, Alison. Wed . "Building Energy Efficiency in India: Compliance Evaluation of Energy Conservation Building Code". United States. doi:10.2172/1128633. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1128633.
@article{osti_1128633,
title = {Building Energy Efficiency in India: Compliance Evaluation of Energy Conservation Building Code},
author = {Yu, Sha and Evans, Meredydd and Delgado, Alison},
abstractNote = {India is experiencing unprecedented construction boom. The country doubled its floorspace between 2001 and 2005 and is expected to add 35 billion m2 of new buildings by 2050. Buildings account for 35% of total final energy consumption in India today, and building energy use is growing at 8% annually. Studies have shown that carbon policies will have little effect on reducing building energy demand. Chaturvedi et al. predicted that, if there is no specific sectoral policies to curb building energy use, final energy demand of the Indian building sector will grow over five times by the end of this century, driven by rapid income and population growth. The growing energy demand in buildings is accompanied by a transition from traditional biomass to commercial fuels, particularly an increase in electricity use. This also leads to a rapid increase in carbon emissions and aggravates power shortage in India. Growth in building energy use poses challenges to the Indian government. To curb energy consumption in buildings, the Indian government issued the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) in 2007, which applies to commercial buildings with a connected load of 100 kW or 120kVA. It is predicted that the implementation of ECBC can help save 25-40% of energy, compared to reference buildings without energy-efficiency measures. However, the impact of ECBC depends on the effectiveness of its enforcement and compliance. Currently, the majority of buildings in India are not ECBC-compliant. The United Nations Development Programme projected that code compliance in India would reach 35% by 2015 and 64% by 2017. Whether the projected targets can be achieved depends on how the code enforcement system is designed and implemented. Although the development of ECBC lies in the hands of the national government – the Bureau of Energy Efficiency under the Ministry of Power, the adoption and implementation of ECBC largely relies on state and local governments. Six years after ECBC’s enactment, only two states and one territory out of 35 Indian states and union territories formally adopted ECBC and six additional states are in the legislative process of approving ECBC. There are several barriers that slow down the process. First, stakeholders, such as architects, developers, and state and local governments, lack awareness of building energy efficiency, and do not have enough capacity and resources to implement ECBC. Second, institution for implementing ECBC is not set up yet; ECBC is not included in local building by-laws or incorporated into the building permit process. Third, there is not a systematic approach to measuring and verifying compliance and energy savings, and thus the market does not have enough confidence in ECBC. Energy codes achieve energy savings only when projects comply with codes, yet only few countries measure compliance consistently and periodic checks often indicate poor compliance in many jurisdictions. China and the U.S. appear to be two countries with comprehensive systems in code enforcement and compliance The United States recently developed methodologies measuring compliance with building energy codes at the state level. China has an annual survey investigating code compliance rate at the design and construction stages in major cities. Like many developing countries, India has only recently begun implementing an energy code and would benefit from international experience on code compliance. In this paper, we examine lessons learned from the U.S. and China on compliance assessment and how India can apply these lessons to develop its own compliance evaluation approach. This paper also provides policy suggestions to national, state, and local governments to improve compliance and speed up ECBC implementation.},
doi = {10.2172/1128633},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Mar 26 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Wed Mar 26 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}

Technical Report:

Save / Share:
  • As part of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's (LBL) technical assistance to the Sustainable City Project, compliance and enforcement activities related to local and state building codes for existing and new construction were evaluated in two case studies. The analysis of the City of San Francisco's Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance (RECO) showed that a limited, prescriptive energy conservation ordinance for existing residential construction can be enforced relatively easily with little administrative costs, and that compliance with such ordinances can be quite high. Compliance with the code was facilitated by extensive publicity, an informed public concerned with the cost of energy and knowledgeablemore » about energy efficiency, the threat of punishment (Order of Abatement), the use of private inspectors, and training workshops for City and private inspectors. The analysis of California's Title 24 Standards for new residential and commercial construction showed that enforcement of this type of code for many climate zones is more complex and requires extensive administrative support for education and training of inspectors, architects, engineers, and builders. Under this code, prescriptive and performance approaches for compliance are permitted, resulting in the demand for alternative methods of enforcement: technical assistance, plan review, field inspection, and computer analysis. In contrast to existing to construction, building design and new materials and construction practices are of critical importance in new construction, creating a need for extensive technical assistance and extensive interaction between enforcement personnel and the building community. Compliance problems associated with building design and installation did occur in both residential and nonresidential buildings. 12 refs., 5 tabs.« less
  • India launched the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) in 2007 and Indian Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) recently indicated that it would move to mandatory implementation in the 12th Five-Year Plan. The State of Rajasthan adopted ECBC with minor modifications; the new regulation is known as the Energy Conservation Building Directives – Rajasthan 2011 (ECBD-R). It became mandatory in Rajasthan on September 28, 2011. This report provides recommendations on an ECBD-R enforcement roadmap for the State of Rajasthan.
  • Visakhapatnam can play an important role in improving energy efficiency in its buildings by implementing ECBC. This document seeks to capture stakeholder recommendations on a road map for implementation, which can help all market players plan for implementation. Visakhapatnam also has an opportunity to serve as a role model for other Smart Cities and cities in general in India. The road map and steps that VUDA adopts to implement ECBC can provide helpful examples to these other cities.
  • As part of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's (LBL) technical assistance to the Sustainable City Project, compliance and enforcement activities related to local and state building codes for existing and new construction were evaluated in two case studies. The analysis of the City of San Francisco's Residential Energy Conservation Ordinance (RECO) showed that a limited, prescriptive energy conservation ordinance for existing residential construction can be enforced relatively easily with little administrative costs, and that compliance with such ordinances can be quite high. Compliance with the code was facilitated by extensive publicity, an informed public concerned with the cost of energy and knowledgeablemore » about energy efficiency, the threat of punishment (Order of Abatement), the use of private inspectors, and training workshops for City and private inspectors. The analysis of California's Title 24 Standards for new residential and commercial construction showed that enforcement of this type of code for many climate zones is more complex and requires extensive administrative support for education and training of inspectors, architects, engineers, and builders. Under this code, prescriptive and performance approaches for compliance are permitted, resulting in the demand for alternative methods of enforcement: technical assistance, plan review, field inspection, and computer analysis. In contrast to existing construction, building design and new materials and construction practices are of critical importance in new construction, creating a need for extensive technical assistance and extensive interaction between enforcement personnel and the building community. Compliance problems associated with building design and installation did occur in both residential and nonresidential buildings. Because statewide codes are enforced by local officials, these problems may increase over time as energy standards change and become more complex and as other standards (eg, health and safety codes) remain a higher priority. The California Energy Commission realizes that code enforcement by itself is insufficient and expects that additional educational and technical assistance efforts (eg, manuals, training programs, and toll-free telephone lines) will ameliorate these problems.« less
  • This document is provided as an appendix outlining the building codes and energy efficiency standards for manufactured housing in Chicago.