The Green Register Blog

For and by sustainable construction professionals

Legionella - the risks and the solutions

Posted on March 1st, 2015

Cath Hassell | ech2o 

Legionella pneumophila bacteria (first identified in July 1976) are found in all types of nutrient-rich fresh water environments, including rivers and streams. From these sources they enter and colonise man-made water systems such as humidifiers, cooling towers and hot and cold water systems. The bacteria are dormant below 20°C and do not survive above 60°C. Legionella only become a risk to health if the bacteria multiply rapidly, which occurs when temperatures are between 20-45°C...

Posted in General News, Recommended, Water


Zero Carbon Homes and the Performance Gap

Posted on February 1st, 2015

Tom Dollard | Pollard Thomas Edwards

The Zero Carbon Hub’s recent work with industry has found extensive evidence of a considerable ‘Performance Gap’ between the energy use of new homes as-designed and the actual use of the completed building. This gap occurs when a constructed home requires more energy than was predicted during its design, before taking into account the behaviour of occupants.

This gap represents a significant risk to...

Posted in Building envelope, Carbon emissions, Features, Low and Zero Carbon Technologies, Recommended, Sustainable Development


Total Washroom Control – an answer to water wastage in schools?

Posted on January 1st, 2015

Cath Hassell | ech2o 

Anyone who is used to working in the commercial sector and looking at scoring easy BREEAM points will already know all about total washroom control (1). For the rest of you think urinal controls only bigger, better, faster, exerting control over all the water supply into a toilet block.

Benchmarking of schools

The main way of comparing different buildings with regards to how much water they use is based on the number of building users. For schools the...

Posted in Low and Zero Carbon Technologies, Sustainable Development, Water


Sustainable Construction - 2000 to date – are we there yet?

Posted on December 1st, 2014

Lucy Pedler | The Green Register

I recently made a presentation to a room full of architects for the RIBA South West in Exeter. Having been given free reign about what to present, I chose to take a look at what progress we have, or have not, made since the turn of the century.

There is no doubt that Bill Dunster’s BedZed scheme in south London welcomed the new century in with a bang. It is one of the most...

Posted in Building envelope, Carbon emissions, Features, Low and Zero Carbon Technologies, Sustainable Development


Water and Narrow Boats

Posted on November 1st, 2014

Jillian Mitchell | Project Logistics

I recently enjoyed a week’s holiday on a narrow boat.  There’s something about pootling around at 3 miles an hour, spending time in the great outdoors, which slows the mind and gives time to think, or better still, time to simply be – a rare treat, these days.

This blog isn’t about my holidays, although of course that would be fascinating.  This is actually about water consumption.  (I won’t cover the wonders of civil engineering and water...

Posted in General News, Have your say, Recommended, Sustainable Development, Water

1 Comment

Fracking: The Numbers Game

Posted on October 1st, 2014

Rob Borruso

I was planning a whole load of puns to go with this blog especially as my take on this is going to be rather heavy on facts and figures. But actually no, I think it is best that we all suffer the numbers. To my mind to issues surrounding fracking are, in many ways, a lot like those surrounding nuclear power. The public at large want lower bills and energy security at the prices that cheap fossil fuels have always delivered. Unfortunately, the fact that the era of cheap energy bills is now in the past is an inconvenient...

Posted in Features, General News, Have your say, Recommended, Sustainable Development


Hot taps in public toilets – are they necessary?

Posted on September 1st, 2014

Cath Hassell | ech2o 

G3 (1) of the Building Regulations (England and Wales) states that hot water must be provided ‘to any washbasin in, or adjacent to, a room containing a sanitary convenience.’(1) Under the guidance it states that: ‘in the Secretary of State’s view the requirement will be met if: the installation conveys hot water to the sanitary appliances … without waste, misuse, or undue consumption of water.’ (2) G4 states that: ‘adequate hand washing facilities must be provided in rooms containing...

Posted in Carbon emissions, General News, Legislation, Low and Zero Carbon Technologies, Sustainable Development, Water

1 Comment

Zero Carbon Homes 2016

Posted on August 1st, 2014
Tom Dollard | Associate and head of sustainable design | Pollard Thomas Edwards

In her speech last month setting out the government's proposed legislative programme for the year ahead, the Queen confirmed that we will be building zero-carbon homes in 2016. Surprisingly, she also revealed a loophole that could let developers bypass carbon reduction schemes on small sites.

The Zero Carbon Hub (ZCH) has been working with industry...

Posted in Carbon emissions, Features, General News, Legislation, Low and Zero Carbon Technologies, Sustainable Development

1 Comment

Recycling V Reuse – Not as simple as you think

Posted on July 1st, 2014
Q: Ceramic tile sample recycling?
Do you know of any depots who collect unused ceramic tile samples?
As an architectural practice, we get lots of samples and companies are often very reluctant to pick up samples once the job is complete or if the...

Posted in Building envelope, Carbon emissions, Sustainable Development


Sustainable energy finance – A direction to a green economy?

Posted on June 1st, 2014

Chris Hocknell & Rita Margarido | eight associates  

What needs to be done?

Commercial sector buildings are responsible for 10% of the UK’s carbon emissions, and it is estimated that £1.6 billion in cost savings could be achieved through investment in commercial energy efficiency. However, the Bank of England states that banks and investment institutions are actually reducing their lending although they have significant financial reserves. Clearly there is an opportunity for directing these funds to productive means; it is called sustainable energy finance.

How can it be...

Posted in Building envelope, Carbon emissions, Features, Legislation, Retrofit, Sustainable Development



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