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

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
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Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States
India, ECBC, Code Compliance Evaluation