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PassREg project to trigger the successful implementation of NZEBs

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The ongoing PassREg project, Passive House Regions with Renewable Energies, aims to trigger the successful implementation of NZEBs throughout the EU, promoting buildings built according to the Passivhaus concept (extremely low energy needs for heating and cooling and a limit to total primary energy consumption) and supplied as much as possible by renewable energies.

The research project started in May 2012 is now on-going with scientific activities and several events listed on PassREg web-site, such as study-tours of technical expert and politicians from all Europe in the advanced front runner regions (i.e.; Hannover and Brussels) that have developed strong support policies and commitments to PH, or visits to hundreds of Passive buildings in Europe.

High quality Passive Houses will be monitored in energy consumption and comfort performances, notably in warm regions where, up to now, the deployment of passive house has been very low. An example is an advanced Zero-energy certified Passive House in Mediterranean climate conditions of Sicily, in Italy, which has been designed with the support of dynamic simulations and comfort optimization techniques and will be closely monitored for 2 years by  eERG-PoliMI - the end-use Efficiency Research Group of Politecnico di Milano.

The PassReg project is supported by  Intelligent Energy Europe and takes into account that several European municipalities and regions are already committed to energy efficient Passive House principles (dictating maximum heating and cooling demands of 15 kWh/(m²a) each in new builds) The project covers the very low remaining energy demand in these buildings, to a significant extent and where logically, by energy from renewable energy sources. Along with other best practice examples, the experiences from these front runner regions, or PassREgs, will help pave the way for other EU regions to achieve the EPBD targets by 2020.

This project is thus based on European regions/municipalities that either are already PassREg regions or are striving to become such regions. Through this project, the front runner regions that have already implemented successful, cost effective strategies will be optimized and made visible. Based on the lessons learnt within the project and useful parts of their models, the mechanisms in place promoting and supporting the implementation of PassREg concepts will be adapted and implemented in the aspiring regions (less advanced partner regions that are striving to become front runners). Beacon projects, real construction and refurbishment projects built in accordance with Passive House and supplied by renewable energy where sensible, will round out the project, providing concrete case studies that will shed light on how each model promotes progress. Regions associated with consortium partners not yet fully ready to commit to a model but often with a beacon project already in existence (theses are known as standalone beacon regions) also contribute to the development of project goals.