The Emirates Green Building Council has published new guidelines on how best to retrofit existing buildings to make them more environmentally friendly and efficient.
Technical Guidelines for Retrofitting Existing Buildings covers topics such as indoor air quality, water and energy use, materials and waste, as well as management techniques and innovations designed to lower maintenance and labour costs for owners.
The guidelines have received approval from the Ministry of Public Works and the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy for conforming to the UAE’s National Agenda 2021. It has also been written in line with the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy and Abu Dhabi Vision 2030.
“There are 120,000 buildings in Dubai alone. A lot of these were built prior to any sustainable or energy-efficient building codes in the UAE, so there is a large, large potential for retrofitting these,” said Saeed Al Abbar, chairman of the Emirates Green Building Council.
The guidelines also include local and regional standards, building procedures and innovative technologies available that can increase energy efficiency and sustainability.
The chairman also highlighted the need for the buildings’ tenants to change their behaviour when it comes to making UAE’s buildings more sustainable. He says that tenants should be mindful of how much water and energy they use.
“We can always have the most brilliantly designed buildings or most brilliant retrofits, but if the tenants aren’t using energy and water in an efficient way a lot of that is lost,” continued Al Abbar.