Business from Sustainability: Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing

Minna Halme, Jyri Nieminen, Esa Nykänen, Leena Sarvaranta, Antti Savonen

Research output: Book/ReportReport

Abstract

Why is the market interest in energy efficient houses still low? Is it because consumers do not want to pay a higher initial investment cost? Are consumers interested or aware of energy related issues? Are the constructors unwilling to push these products to the market in a situation where price seems to be the only source of competitive advantage? In the last 15-20 years, a number of projects have been carried out aiming at energy-efficient and environmentally friendly housing. There is a wide range of technologies and concepts that have been tested in monitoring projects. Technological possibilities to reduce a building's energy consumption have been available for a long time. Also, the costs of energy efficiency have been proved to be almost negligible. Despite the existing vast amount of information, no clear market change has happened. The scope of a low-energy building is to achieve comfortable, healthy and safe indoor climate. The construction is based on simple and well performing materials, structures and building services systems that fulfil the requirements set for the building. Energy efficient housing would offer many individual level benefits, and in order to assess them one should have a long-term perspective. As heating accounts for a majority of the life cycle costs of a house, energy efficiency means substantial cost savings. However, up to now most homebuilders are not focused on energy efficiency. There is not a single barrier that keeps energy-efficient housing from taking off. A whole range of issues has to be considered. Commercialisation of energy efficient single-family houses comes close to the problems of commercialising any environmentally sustainable product. They come in conflict with the current industry structures, organisations and institutions and with the general behaviour of different, related actors. In this situation, special measures are needed to promote commercialisation. The transition to sustainability needs to be managed. Earlier research findings on energy efficient building, conducted by VTT, are now complemented by this study. We have identified major trends paving the way towards business from sustainability. Our focus was on three strategic issues:1. Demand and supply of niche products, i.e. energy efficient single-family houses; 2. Drivers for business potential and opportunities; 3. Management of transition to environmentally sustainable business.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEspoo
PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Number of pages68
ISBN (Electronic)951-38-6742-0
ISBN (Print)951-38-6741-2
Publication statusPublished - 2005
MoE publication typeNot Eligible

Publication series

SeriesVTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes
Number2310
ISSN1235-0605

Fingerprint

Sustainable development
Energy efficiency
Costs
Industry
Life cycle
Energy utilization
Heating
Monitoring

Keywords

  • single family houses
  • energy efficiency
  • energy consumption
  • energy conservation
  • environmentally sustainable business
  • eco-efficient construction
  • regional construction
  • strategic niche management
  • life-cycle costs
  • business opportunities

Cite this

Halme, M., Nieminen, J., Nykänen, E., Sarvaranta, L., & Savonen, A. (2005). Business from Sustainability: Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing. Espoo: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes, No. 2310
Halme, Minna ; Nieminen, Jyri ; Nykänen, Esa ; Sarvaranta, Leena ; Savonen, Antti. / Business from Sustainability : Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing. Espoo : VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, 2005. 68 p. (VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes; No. 2310).
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Halme, M, Nieminen, J, Nykänen, E, Sarvaranta, L & Savonen, A 2005, Business from Sustainability: Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing. VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes, no. 2310, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Espoo.

Business from Sustainability : Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing. / Halme, Minna; Nieminen, Jyri; Nykänen, Esa; Sarvaranta, Leena; Savonen, Antti.

Espoo : VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, 2005. 68 p. (VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes; No. 2310).

Research output: Book/ReportReport

TY - BOOK

T1 - Business from Sustainability

T2 - Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing

AU - Halme, Minna

AU - Nieminen, Jyri

AU - Nykänen, Esa

AU - Sarvaranta, Leena

AU - Savonen, Antti

N1 - Project code: R5SU01301

PY - 2005

Y1 - 2005

N2 - Why is the market interest in energy efficient houses still low? Is it because consumers do not want to pay a higher initial investment cost? Are consumers interested or aware of energy related issues? Are the constructors unwilling to push these products to the market in a situation where price seems to be the only source of competitive advantage? In the last 15-20 years, a number of projects have been carried out aiming at energy-efficient and environmentally friendly housing. There is a wide range of technologies and concepts that have been tested in monitoring projects. Technological possibilities to reduce a building's energy consumption have been available for a long time. Also, the costs of energy efficiency have been proved to be almost negligible. Despite the existing vast amount of information, no clear market change has happened. The scope of a low-energy building is to achieve comfortable, healthy and safe indoor climate. The construction is based on simple and well performing materials, structures and building services systems that fulfil the requirements set for the building. Energy efficient housing would offer many individual level benefits, and in order to assess them one should have a long-term perspective. As heating accounts for a majority of the life cycle costs of a house, energy efficiency means substantial cost savings. However, up to now most homebuilders are not focused on energy efficiency. There is not a single barrier that keeps energy-efficient housing from taking off. A whole range of issues has to be considered. Commercialisation of energy efficient single-family houses comes close to the problems of commercialising any environmentally sustainable product. They come in conflict with the current industry structures, organisations and institutions and with the general behaviour of different, related actors. In this situation, special measures are needed to promote commercialisation. The transition to sustainability needs to be managed. Earlier research findings on energy efficient building, conducted by VTT, are now complemented by this study. We have identified major trends paving the way towards business from sustainability. Our focus was on three strategic issues:1. Demand and supply of niche products, i.e. energy efficient single-family houses; 2. Drivers for business potential and opportunities; 3. Management of transition to environmentally sustainable business.

AB - Why is the market interest in energy efficient houses still low? Is it because consumers do not want to pay a higher initial investment cost? Are consumers interested or aware of energy related issues? Are the constructors unwilling to push these products to the market in a situation where price seems to be the only source of competitive advantage? In the last 15-20 years, a number of projects have been carried out aiming at energy-efficient and environmentally friendly housing. There is a wide range of technologies and concepts that have been tested in monitoring projects. Technological possibilities to reduce a building's energy consumption have been available for a long time. Also, the costs of energy efficiency have been proved to be almost negligible. Despite the existing vast amount of information, no clear market change has happened. The scope of a low-energy building is to achieve comfortable, healthy and safe indoor climate. The construction is based on simple and well performing materials, structures and building services systems that fulfil the requirements set for the building. Energy efficient housing would offer many individual level benefits, and in order to assess them one should have a long-term perspective. As heating accounts for a majority of the life cycle costs of a house, energy efficiency means substantial cost savings. However, up to now most homebuilders are not focused on energy efficiency. There is not a single barrier that keeps energy-efficient housing from taking off. A whole range of issues has to be considered. Commercialisation of energy efficient single-family houses comes close to the problems of commercialising any environmentally sustainable product. They come in conflict with the current industry structures, organisations and institutions and with the general behaviour of different, related actors. In this situation, special measures are needed to promote commercialisation. The transition to sustainability needs to be managed. Earlier research findings on energy efficient building, conducted by VTT, are now complemented by this study. We have identified major trends paving the way towards business from sustainability. Our focus was on three strategic issues:1. Demand and supply of niche products, i.e. energy efficient single-family houses; 2. Drivers for business potential and opportunities; 3. Management of transition to environmentally sustainable business.

KW - single family houses

KW - energy efficiency

KW - energy consumption

KW - energy conservation

KW - environmentally sustainable business

KW - eco-efficient construction

KW - regional construction

KW - strategic niche management

KW - life-cycle costs

KW - business opportunities

M3 - Report

SN - 951-38-6741-2

T3 - VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes

BT - Business from Sustainability

PB - VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

CY - Espoo

ER -

Halme M, Nieminen J, Nykänen E, Sarvaranta L, Savonen A. Business from Sustainability: Drivers for Energy Efficient Housing. Espoo: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, 2005. 68 p. (VTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes; No. 2310).