Memorandum submitted by INREB Faraday
INREB Faraday Partnership was launched in November
2001 to create a UK focus for research and demonstration, technology
transfer and training in the integration of new and renewable
energy in buildings. It harnesses the expertise of the leading
UK Research Organisation in building technology and the four leading
academic research groups, to work with industry and government
in exploiting the business opportunities afforded by such integration.
This also creates environmental benefits by reducing carbon dioxide
emissions from buildings. The "core" Partners are:
Building Research Establishment (BRE).
The Institute of Energy and Sustainable
Development, De Montfort University.
The Building Services Engineering
Group, Loughborough University.
The Centre for Renewable Energy Systems
Technology (CREST), Loughborough University.
School of the Built Environment,
University of Nottingham.
The Centre of Sustainable Technologies,
University of Ulster.
The Partnership's aim is to accelerate the growth
of new and renewable products from UK companies by focusing effort
at the most commercially important areas, through dissemination
of results and by leveraging European knowledge and funds.
INREB seeks to strengthen UK industry by:
bringing together the leading industrial
organisations, businesses, and academic groups concerned with
the integration of new and renewable energy sources into the built
proactively establishing a programme
of activities that will ensure the ready definition of industry
needs, their translation into academic research, and subsequent
exploitation by industry;
generating a programme of collaborative
research, initially centred upon four leading Universities;
transferring the knowledge gained
from research to all stakeholders in the industry; and
creating an integrated platform of
modular training opportunities targeted at the needs of businesses
and organisations, and providing a flow of knowledge and people
The Partnership provides a national hub for
the many businesses and stakeholders concerned, and enables a
common approach to ensure the successful integration of new and
renewable energy technologies into buildings. INREB works with
all groups involved in the construction industry from key decision
makers to consultants to contractors. Partnership activities are
aligned with the building process and are organised under the
Planning & Legislationinvestigating
existing national, regional and local policies to identify those
that encourage increased uptake of renewable energy and those
that represent barriers.
hybrid building envelope systems in which the functional needs
of buildings in specific climate and use contexts are met by the
optimised deployment of renewable technologies.
the impact that new and renewable technologies make on reducing
carbon dioxide emissions, by adopting a more sophisticated approach
towards their integration into a building's environmental and
Construction & Infrastructureidentifying
the impediments to energy exports, the implication of embedded
generation on the operation of the electricity grid and the use
of energy storage systems.
Within these themes, the INREB programme embraces
three main areas of work:
Research & Demonstration
INREB Collaborative Projectsstrategic
and innovative R&D projects, developed through partnerships
between industry and academia.
INREB Industry ProjectsR&D
projects designed to meet the needs of specific industries, organisations
and government bodies.
The INREB Technology Transfer Programme
has been developed to help industry, organisations and government
overcome the barriers, and accelerate and exploit the business
opportunities afforded by new and renewable energy. Activities
include company visits, setting up of industry clubs, meetings
and consultation events.
Comprising four areas of activity,
the INREB Knowledge Transfer Programme offers training, education
and skills development to built environment professional in the
area of new and renewable energy in buildings:
conferences, seminars, publications and demonstrator initiatives.
Strategic Briefingfor key
Professional Knowledge Transferincluding,
Continual Professional Development training, industry specific
short courses, Master level courses, PhD Studentships, and people
movement through industry.
It is widely accepted that renewable energy
sources are the key to a sustainable energy supply system since
they are both inexhaustible and non-polluting. The main relevant
technologies are PV, solar thermal (including water, air and passive
solar) and biomass based heaters and generators. These are complemented
by a range of new technologies which include energy storage (in
various forms for both electricity and heat) and fuel cells, building
integrated wind technologies plus some more developed equipment
such as (ground source and air to air) heat pumps, together with
combined heat and power (chp) including the exciting recent variants
of micro-chp and mini turbine generators. In addition there are
new technologies specific to the built environment, for example
stack-effect ventilation and ventilated facades.
The challenge faced by the INREB Partnership
is to remove the barriers to successful uptake of the technologies
and to integrate them into built structures so as to gain the
maximum technical and economic advantage.
Renewable Energy has become a major issue in
in economic terms, the EU
estimates a 17 billion ECU annual export business in renewable
energy technology by 2010, and World Energy Council projections
indicate cumulative investment in renewables as 500 billion ECU
in 2010. Scenario analyses by Shell show renewables meeting some
40% of world energy needs by 2050;
in employment terms, the number
of jobs created in the EU through renewable energy technology
is predicted as 300,000 direct jobs and a further 200,000 indirect
jobs by 2005. There are 810 companies, mostly SMEs listed in the
Guide to UK Renewable Energy Companies;
in environmental terms, there
is increasing awareness of the perils of global warming, and the
finite nature of the world's fossil fuels;
in legislative terms, ambitious
targets have been set following the Kyoto agreement for the reduction
of greenhouse gas and carbon dioxide emissions by 2010energy
use in buildings currently accounts for 45% of UK emissions; and
in government terms, the Foresight
Energy and Natural Environment Panel identifies generation from
renewables, the barriers to their application, and the reduction
of emissions as key areas for research and development. The Government's
commitment to assisting industry in the efficient generation and
use of renewables is reflected in a wide range of funding initiatives
including the EPSRC RNET programme, and more recently the announcement
by the Prime Minister (October 2000) of the creation of a Sustainable
Development Commission, a Kyoto Mechanisms Office (to assist export
of low carbon technologies), and the Carbon Trust (to channel
£50 million into low carbon technology).
The generation and efficient use of renewable
energy is not an issue that falls naturally into the traditional
structures of business. It is an inter-disciplinary activity that
requires action and co-operation between society, industry, academia,
and the economy. Furthermore, it is necessary for business to
understand the principle that significant competitive advantage
can be gained through adopting the appropriate and efficient use
of renewable energy as part of strategic planning. There is currently
an awareness problem. INREB Faraday Partnership bridges
the lack of understanding in and between the diverse and fragmented
industries and organisations involved in the use of new and renewable
energy in buildings and channel to the industry academic advances.
Much needs to be done within the many individual
topics embraced by renewable energy in buildings. For industry
to take full advantage of the commercial opportunities, it is
critical that the component technologies are integrated togethersuch
that energy generation and efficiency forms an integral and early
part of the design process.
This will ensure:
reduced construction costs leading
to enlarged markets with mass device manufacture, further reducing
costs and increasing commercial viability and opportunity;
integration of renewable energy devices
within the fabric of a building reduces construction cost compared
to later retrofit; and
improved integration in building
design to meet local authority requirements and aspirations.
INREB's Industrial Partners are drawn from all
the stakeholders involved in new and renewable energy in buildings.
These range from building designers and developers, through to
energy equipment suppliers and the construction industry itself.
INREB also includes the policy makers, the local authorities,
the utilities, and the general publicwithout the involvement
of these, the Partnership would not be able to effectively achieve
technology transfer into the whole system. This diversity of Partners
means there are no "key" individual companies associated
with the Faradayit is inclusive and embraces the
The Partnership, through events, meetings, consultation
activities and collaborative research projects has successfully
formed links with key stakeholders both in the UK and Europe during
it's first year of operation. Some examples include Professional
Institutes (ie RIBA, CIBSE, RTPI, InstE); Trade Associations (ie
PV-UK, Solar Trade Association, Heat Pump Association); Manufacturers
and Suppliers (ie Solar Century, XCO2) Consultancies
(ie ESD, Dulas); Local Authorities (ie Three Rivers District Council,
Norwich City Council) and other bodies such as Energy Saving Trust
and Carbon Trust.
The new and renewable energy in buildings sector
offers exciting opportunities, both industrially and academically.
The sector is however diverse in the range of stakeholders involved,
the barriers to take-up, and the academic disciplines that contribute
to the sector. This fragmentation is matched by the many initiatives,
public and private, in the energy sector as a whole. The INREB
Faraday Partnership through bringing together the needs of
the industry and four world-class University groups therefore
adds value through:
the provision of a focussed activity
that achieves critical mass in all aspects of new and renewable
energy for buildings and will have the multi-institution, multi-discipline
ability to provide holistic optimal solutions rather than simply
optimising components or subsystems;
the achievement of excellence through
increased interaction between all stakeholders that leads to robust
exchanges of viewsa combined "finger on the pulse"generating
both relevance and focus in research and training; and
the combined resource of the Partnership
in terms of expertise, facilities, networks, training opportunities,
and demonstrator sites that will bring cost-effectiveness and
18 November 2002