BCA Energy Efficiency Measures

Volume Two (Housing Provisions) of the Building Code Australia (BCA) intcludes energy efficiency.

Energy efficiency measurements for all classes of buildings are also included in BCA Volume One (Class 2 to 9 buildings) .


These measures include Performance Requirements and Deemed-to-Satisfy Provisions for the following building elements:

  •  The thermal performance of walls, ceilings, floors and glazing including shading in order to avoid or reduce the use of artificial conditioning (heating and cooling).
  •  The sealing of buildings to reduce energy loss through air leakage. Natural ventilation and      internal air movement, where appropriate, to avoid or reduce the use of artificial conditioning.
  •  Engineering services including
        · Lighting systems.
        · Air-conditioning, heating and ventilation systems.
        · Hot water supply systems.
        · Maintenance of these systems.

  • The Performance Based BCA Volume 2 Energy Efficiency Performance Requirements are:

    Volume 2 Appropriate Performance Requirements are:

    3.12   Energy Efficiency

    3.12.1 Building fabric
    3.12.2 External Glazing
    3.12.3 Building Sealing
    3.12.4 ASir Movement
    3.12.5 Services

    Volume 1 Energy Efficiency Performance Requirements are:

    Section J Energy Efficiency
    Specification JV   Annual Energy Consumption Criteria
    Part J0 - ENERGY EFFICIENCY Deemed-to-Satisfy Provisions
    Part J1 - Building Fabric
    Part J2 - Glazing
    Part J3 - Building Sealing
    Part J4 -   * * * * *
    Part J5 - Air-Conditioning & Ventilation
    Part J6 - Artificial Lighting and Power
    Part J7 - Hot Water Supply and Swimming Pool and Spa Pool Plant
    Part J8 - Access for Maintenance and Facilities for Monitoring
    Specifications  SPECIFICATION J1.2 MATERIAL PROPERTIES


    The BCA is a performance-based code that sets out the level of performance that a building or structure is to achieve. This allows cost savings in building construction by:

  •  the use of alternative or innovative materials and forms of construction      or designs;
  •  allowing designs to be tailored to a particular building;
  •  being clear and providing guidance on what the BCA is trying to      achieve; and
  •  allowing the designer flexibility while still permitting existing building      practices through the  Deemed-to-Satisfy Provisions.

  • Allowing for innovation is particularly relevant in developing energy efficiency measures because technologies are rapidly emerging as the community and industry become more conscious of the issues.


    Alternative Solutions

    Rather than use the Deemed-to-Satisfy Provisions, a designer may choose to use an Alternative Solution. For this, the approval authority needs to be satisfied that the Alternative Solution meets the Performance Requirements. There are four means of assessing Alternative Solutions. They are:

  •  Use of a Verification Method;
  •  Equivalence to a Deemed-to-Satisfy Provision;
  •  Evidence of suitability; and
  •   Expert judgment or opinion.

  • Alternative Solutions is not identified in the BCA and must be justified as complying with the Performance Requirement.
    Documentary evidence is required (Not identified in the BCA) but must be justified as complying with the Performance Requirement

    Documentary evidence can be provided by
  • Registered Testing Authority report
  • Certificate:
          - Conformity or Accreditation
          - Proposed CodeMark
    .     - From a professional engineer
          - Issued by certification body that has been accredited by JAS-ANZ

  • SSL Product Listing Data Sheet for Fire Protection Equipment
  • Any other form of documentary evidence

    Administrative documentation can be provided by
  • Certification
  • Full assessment report
           Conditions
           Relevant non-compliance to the DTS
           Applicable Performance Requirements
           Assumptions, limitations
           References, software programs, etc

    Using a Verification Method involves following a specific procedure to determine whether, under the prescribed conditions, the required criterion is met. For example, this criterion may be a star rating to the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme or the energy load per annum per unit area. The Verification Method can also be a procedure for determining the required criterion.


    For energy efficiency measures, equivalence to a Deemed-to-Satisfy Provision could mean analysing the subject building with the Deemed-to-Satisfy Provisions and then adjusting the analysis input using the Alternative Solution. Provided the estimated energy load of the Alternative Solution does not exceed that of the Deemed-to-Satisfy Provision, the proposed solution could be acceptable. Acceptable forms of Evidence of Suitability are described in Clause A2.2 of BCA Volume One.

    Expert Judgment is an Assessment Method involving peer opinion and may be used, for example, where the other forms of assessment are not suitable.

    Karl Boeing