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Energy efficiency – coming to a home near you

Press Release – German-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce

German energy efficiency technologies are making a significant impact on the New Zealand building environment.Energy efficiency – coming to a home near you
German energy efficiency technologies are making a significant impact on the New Zealand building environment.

German-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce (GNZCC) Chief Executive Officer Monique Surges says the energy efficiency industry in Germany earns around $US67 billion ($NZ97 billion) a year from innovative technologies to save energy – and New Zealand is already benefitting strongly.

More than 30 German companies involved in energy efficiency technologies are active in New Zealand, working in close partnership with New Zealand firms.

Their joint efforts are being showcased at the BuildNZ trade show at the ASB Showgrounds in Auckland next week (4-5 July), which will feature 13 companies and recognise and award five New Zealand properties that have achieved dramatic energy savings through employing German technologies.

The five featured properties represent the vanguard of the Passive House movement in New Zealand, says Ms Surges. A passive house is one that is airtight and requires almost no heating, and four of the five buildings are passive house-certified, she says.

One of the properties, a private home in Glendowie Auckland, was the first residence to be certified in 2012. It features a continuous, energy-efficient hot water system based on an external heat pump that achieves up to 68% in energy savings compared with conventional electrically heated systems. The house also incorporates airtight ceiling and wall construction, solar panels, double glazing and smart ventilation enabling it to maintain a steady 20-degrees year-round.

Another of the featured properties located at Coatesville incorporates solar hot water and photovoltaic technologies that produce 75% of the energy needs for the home, which also has Insulated Concrete Form (ICF) walls, airtight membranes and a smart ventilation system.

The technology showcase event will include a networking event on 4 July and the second day will include a workshop on the new technologies and a site visit to the Coatesville property as well as a five-level apartment block in Mount Eden. Completed this year, it has a low-energy Mechanical Ventilation system with Heat Recovery (MVHR) providing heat recovery efficiency of up to 92%. Developers of the Mt Eden block took the bold step of not including any carparking, significantly reducing the building’s carbon footprint in terms of CO2 emissions.

The other two showcased properties, both located in Christchurch, similarly feature technologies that bring their energy use costs almost to zero: a private home in St Martins that achieves 95% heat recovery from its MVHR system; and another in Fendalton that incorporates extensive blown-in and conventional (“Batts”) Earthwool® glass-wool insulation.

German-New Zealand collaboration strong

Ms Surges says the technology showcase, the first such display of German energy efficiency and conservation technology in New Zealand, recognises the major growth of collaboration between New Zealand and German companies.

The showcase is funded by the German Energy Solutions Initiative of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The Ministry first put its weight behind the partnership in 2005, and the GNZCC has made a concerted effort to develop partnerships to improve building quality in New Zealand by reducing energy costs and lowering CO2 emissions, Ms Surges says. “That’s taken on a new importance following the release last year of the NZ Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy for the next five years.”

The German companies featured during BuildNZ in the “Made in Germany” pavilion and as part of the showcase are: Pro Clima NZ Ltd, Zehnder, Häfele New Zealand Ltd, Knauf Insulation NZ Ltd, ACO Ltd, Schräder Emission Technology, Stiebel Eltron NZ Ltd, Vestner NZ Ltd, SchwoererHome Asia Pacific GmbH, Würth New Zealand, BASF New Zealand, TECHNOFORM, STO New Zealand & Australia, and Wolf.

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