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Energy labels and the actual energy consumption of office buildings
Sipma, J.M.; Kremer, A.; Vroom, J.
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Policy Studies 17-1-2017
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-E--16-056 ECN publication
Number of pages: Full text:
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In this research, we investigated the gas- and electricity consumption of 1000 offices with energy labels in the Netherlands. We observe a reduction of around 50% in gas intensity (gas consumption per square meter) from the most inefficient G-label towards the highest level of efficiency, the A-label. This is due to better insulation, more energy efficient heating systems, etc. At the same time, the electricity intensity increases by 23% from label-G to label-A. Though at first this seems not to be logical, with this research we were able to understand the reason behind this observation. We recognised two contributions to total measured electricity consumption; that of the buildings themselves and that of the user. The electricity intensity of the building at first increases as it is classified under a more energy-efficient label due to an increase use of cooling and forced ventilation. As the building attains a more efficient energy classification (moving towards label A), energy efficient lighting reduces the energy intensity of the building. Offices classified under a higher energy-efficiency label, on average have a higher occupancy rate, which causes the electricity intensity of the user contribution to increase continuously from label-G towards label-A. The net result of both the building and user electricity consumption is a 23% increase from label G to A.

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