Theodoros Sotirios Tountas
Languages: English | Pages: 9 pp
Bibliographic info:
42nd AIVC - 10th TightVent - 8th venticool Conference - Rotterdam, Netherlands - 5-6 October 2022

Low or Zero Energy buildings are becoming increasingly popular and the use of passive-house principles are providing a solid foundation for achieving energy consumption targets and good indoor quality. However, this design methodology has been well received in central and northern Europe than in south and the Mediterranean, where people are used to houses that are open to the external environment. This habit is in contrast to the basic principles of the good airtightness, the energy efficiency and the achievement of a good Indoor Air Quality. Because of this mentality and the current construction methods, it is noticed according to the European Environment Agency, that the average heating consumption of residential properties in Greece is almost double than in Sweden. To unlearn a given situation is more difficult than to learn something new and the current crisis is an opportunity to investigate new design principles and methodologies, to face the critical construction issues and challenges, to develop practical manufacturing solutions as well as to communicate that the good airtightness is not a disadvantage. 
A Zero Energy building procedure in southern and Mediterranean climate, should balance the proper design requirements with the, often contradictory, local ways and demands of using the buildings. Furthermore, this procedure should place much importance on the human experience and satisfaction with the building’s architecture and user’s habits, rather than just the national or European legislations based on numbers.  
A building needs a good airtightness but this requirement sounds like a negative and deterrent request to the local communities. The research of the last 12 years over the Greek experience, constitutes a practical field of experiments with different results to take under consideration and avoid to compromise the way to a low-consumption society with the proper Indoor Air Quality. 
Especially regarding the airtightness, there cannot be any achievement without the acceptance and the contribution of the local population. This research is based on BlowerDoor tests applied in Greece since 2010, reflects the situation on the existing building stock and along with interviews of home owners and professionals (engineers, architects, contractors) provide conclusions and suggestions for similar cases.