Month: March 2020

Energy Efficient Insulated Pitched Roof

Our buildings are becoming more and more energy-efficient and may become almost energy neutral in the future. This means that the energy consumption of the buildings during the use phase represents an ever smaller minimal environmental impact. In this post, we focus on the environmental impact of an insulated pitched roof. Of course, through time, with consideration of wear and tear, there is also a need for roof repair regardless of the type of roof.

The CEN TC 350 committee is currently finalizing a harmonized European normative framework for calculating the environmental impact of buildings and building elements. The BBRI already applied the main principles from this standardization for the execution of the life cycle analysis below.

How does efficient flat roof insulation work?

Life cycle analysis

With the help of a life cycle analysis, one can objectively quantify the environmental impact of a product, taking into account its entire lifespan (from cradle to grave). However, there are several methods for carrying out such an analysis, which can produce very different results.

For example, one has to decide which allocation rules to apply in multi-output processes. These are processes that produce more than one product so that their impact must be correctly distributed among the different products.

Also, the choice of the functional unit can make a big difference. This is the reference unit used in determining the environmental impact and serves as the basis for the comparison. This unit is determined on the basis of the specific product requirements. Since the performance of a material mainly depends on its application, construction products are best compared at the building level or at the level of technically equivalent components. Thanks to this approach, the influence of a particular choice of material on the further construction of a component or building is also taken into account.

Finally, if one wants to study the full life cycle of a construction product or building, one must make certain assumptions that will influence the end result. For example, one must try to make a correct estimate of the transport and the lifespan of the materials, the waste processing method, etc.

Analysis at the element level

Below we compare the environmental impact of different insulation materials in a pitched roof. We use 1 m² horizontally projected roof surface as the basis for the comparison. This surface is constructed as a rafter roof (38 x 175 mm with a center-to-center distance of 50 cm), where the cavities were completely filled with soft insulating materials (eg glass wool or cellulose) and the structure was covered with hard insulating plates (eg PUR ) according to the sarking roof method. We also approximated the energy consumption due to heat losses through the roof using the degree days method (with 1200 equivalent degree days).

The bar chart below shows the environmental impact of the various technically equivalent alternatives for an assumed lifetime of 60 years. This shows that the energy consumption due to the heat losses is significant during this period. The degree of insulation of the roof will therefore have a greater influence on the environmental impact than the nature of the insulation material used.

We also note that natural insulation materials, such as sheep’s wool or cork, do not necessarily score better than traditional materials. To illustrate the importance of the aforementioned allocation rules, we calculated two alternatives for sheep wool. Alternative A assumes that the sheep is raised only for its meat (the wool is a waste product and the environmental impact of breeding is fully attributed to the meat), while Alternative B assumes that it is also raised for its wool (distribution of environmental impact according to the economic value: 22.8% for wool and 77.2% for meat).

Finally, we note that the results differ strongly from those reported in foreign publications of, for example, the NIBE (Netherlands Institute for Building Biology and Ecology). This may be due to differences in allocation rules, functional units, waste treatment methods, impact categories and aggregation methods.
3. Decision
The BBRI has a number of analyzes of other building elements in the pipeline, which will be performed again according to the future European normative framework. Since these objective and transparent analyzes (technical annex available on request) will take Belgian construction traditions into account, they can become a reference work on environmental impact for the construction sector.


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2019 : Earth’s 2nd Warmest Year NASA

Joint NASA and NOAA analyses of the 2019 global surface temperature revealed it was the 2nd warmest, when compared to that of 2016. The findings show that during the recent five years, the planet continues to experience the warmest temperatures ever recorded during the past 140 years and since 1880, when modern-record keeping first began.

Using data derived from statistical analysis of global temperatures and climate models, NASA and NOAA scientists arrived at a conclusion, confirming that the main drivers of global warming are the human-produced greenhouses gases, particularly carbon dioxide. According to NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) Director Gavin Schmidt, temperatures had already crossed past the warming territory of above 2 degrees Fahrenheit in the year 2015, to which there was no going back.

Their analyses show that what has been transpiring persistently in the past five years is indicative of a long term trend, and not a fluke caused by some weather phenomenon. GISS Director Schmidt said that they also know that the growing levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have been driving the increase in temperatures. He remarked that

”Since the 1960s, it was clear that every decade was warmer than the decade before.”

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on the other hand, found out that the annual mean temperatures in the Arctic reached more than the warmer-than-average mean temperature exhibited by the rest of the world. The rise in temperature in the Arctic occurred faster by as much as three times more.

As a result, the continuously rising temperatures caused massive melting in Greenland and Antarctica, and spurred rises in ocean levels that contributed to the development of extreme and violent natural events. Most of which brought about intense precipitations, heatwaves, earthquakes and wildfires.

Devastating Events that Transpired in the Year 2016

Inasmuch as the year 2016 was the warmest, it was also the year when the most devastating events occurred in several countries.

1. Winter Storm Jonas a.k.a “The Storm of the Century”.

2. The 6.4 Earthquake in Taiwan that toppled buildings in the City of Tainan.

3. Series of California Wildfires that totaled 6,938 fires, which caused the burning of about 565,070 acres of land during the year.

4. The 3 strong earthquakes in Italy that occurred one after another in a span of three months. The initial quake killed hundreds of people when medieva-agel stone buildings collapsed.


5. Hurricane Matthew, touted as the strongest storm to have occurred in the Atlantic, which rose briefly to a Category 5 status.

6. The 7.8-magnitude earthquake in New Zealand that was followed by a tsunami.

7. The 2016 Fukushima Earthquake in Japan and the combining tsunami that brought waves measuring 3-meters tall. The earthquake shook the entire world since the forces of the calamities caused damages to the Fukushima Daini Nuclear Power Plant.

9. The 7.8-magnitude Earthquake that struck @estern Indonesia, followed by another 6.5 quake before the end of the year, which killed at least a hundred.

The year 2019 saw more of the devastations caused by powerful hurricanes, stronger earthquakes, tsunamis, wildfires and the occurrences of intense heat waves in different global regions. In India, the country nearly duplicated its 2016 all-time record high of 123.8 degrees Fahrenheit (51 degrees Celsius).

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Brilliant Ways to Organize Your Garage Space

Have you watched the latest Marie Kondo series on Netflix, and you felt like you also need to become more extra in organizing your garage space? Then you’re not alone! This blog is perfect for you!

Of course, organizing your garage space is an ideal way to make sure that you see everything you will ever need from time to time. Like car tools and other repairing necessities. However, organizing your garage space may not come as easy for it is never a one-size-fits-all project.

To help you, here are a few organizing tips and garage shelving ideas for you. You can also get assistance from GarageDoorRepairDFW if you needed repairs and redoing your garage doors.

Garage Shelving Ideas

Of course, people do not want a disorganized garage. Especially if they are fond of working in the garage and fixing things, being able to see everything they might need makes their work easy and efficient. Which is why here are a few garage shelving ideas you can go over.

1. Wire Shelving

You can maximize the space in your garage by using simple and inexpensive shelves, hooks and baskets. Who knows you can start organizing with the easy to find things inside your house? Basically, these garage storage racks are so easy to install that it will only take you one whole morning to get it done. Plus, you can still have tons of downtime for the after. Or maybe you can start working with your stuff.

2. Bin stacks

Seeing bins stacks disorganized at the garage is a real mess. So what you needed to do is to make sure that your bins are stacked the right way, in a way that it won’t also eat up a lot of space. Not only that you also have to make sure that bins are organized and separate by equipment, sport or season. You can also get different colours to make it easier for you to identify which storage you are looking for.

3. Car care products

So you have your car care products and you wanted to make sure that every time you will be in need of it, it will be easier for you to find it. With that said, you can organize your auto coolant, lubricants and other fluids in a simple shelf table cabinet. You can either mount it in a fold-up door on hinges.

4. Store more on walls

One thing that makes your garage lacks in space is that everything is organized or tossed aside in the corners. This is a very real mess especially when you have tons of tools and equipment inside.

What you needed to do is to utilize the walls and start mounting shelves and DIY cabinets on it. You can just put on hooks, studs, and brackets. Not only that, but you can also add a layer of plywood over the drywall or even bare studs. This way you can mount and store storage hardware easily and efficiently.


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