Saving the Planet and Your Wallet



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Introduction

Scribe Energy Assessments and Inspections will assist you to understand and appreciate the benefits of incorporating environmentally sustainable design principles into your project and to develop Energy Conscious designs and construction methodologies that can be incorporated into new or existing, residential and commercial projects.

Incorporated correctly, even simple measures can vastly improve the liveability and feel of your home or workplace and lead to a healthier, happier and more relaxed environment that leads to increased productivity and a better sense of general well-being.   Not to mention fewer energy bills.

We believe in working with you to achieve the optimum outcomes for your project based on your specific project requirements and budget.  Our experience with climate appropriate design, utilisation and integration of passive and active systems, use of current generation computer software and modelling, evaluation of completed projects and state of the art thermal imaging are all combined to provide you with a comprehensive overview of how to minimise your energy use and develop a stronger ‘energy conscience’ and smaller carbon and water footprint.

Scribe Energy Assessments and Inspections continue to work extensively throughout Western Australia and therefore we understand the importance of incorporating and addressing climate appropriate design, orientation, shading, passive solar design principles, insulation, thermal mass and landscaping into our designs to achieve optimum outcomes without sacrificing liveability, style or budget.

We believe strongly in providing the highest level of service to our clients as well as striving to develop our knowledge and understanding of “world changing” technologies and techniques as renewable resources, and energy production and storage become integral parts of new projects.

Preliminary Assessment Report and Advice

A initial part of all Scribe Energy Assessment and Inspections services will involve the preliminary assessment and evaluation of a design or construction methodology in relation to compliance with the energy efficiency requirements nominated under the National Construction Code/Building Code of Australia.

The process of preliminary assessment quickly identifies areas of both compliance and non-compliance under the code as well as areas where improvement may be able to be made.  Advice can include ways to improve efficiency or, based on our experience, materials or construction methodologies that may provide equal or greater efficiency at equal or less cost.

A recurring theme through all our services are the sooner you can obtain advice and utilize the experience of others within your project design phase the better the outcome in terms of integration of technologies and benefits to life-cycle costing.

Residential Compliance

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Alterations & Additions

An area of compliance with the Energy Efficiency protocols that often results in confusion for owners is when alterations or additions to an existing residence are being undertaken.  Depending on the scope and size of the alterations and additions to a residence it can have significant impact on the new and affected existing portions of the residence as they will need to comply with the requirements of NCC/BCA Part 3.12.

There are a number of options to determine compliance and Scribe Energy Assessment and Inspections are committed to selecting the best option for your project and your specific requirements. Options regularly used include:

  • Deemed-to-Satisfy provisions
  • WA Alternation & Addition Protocol for Energy Efficiency
  • Comparison Method / Reference Building (Class 1)

We believe in working closely with your design professional to determine the best method and construction methodologies to achieve compliance.

Multiple Dwellings

Scribe Energy Assessment and Inspections have been undertaking Energy Efficiency assessments on multiple dwelling developments since the inception of energy efficiency rating requirements in Western Australia. We understand the complexity associated with this type of development and the often restricted access units may have to solar access and natural ventilation.

We are happy to work with your architect/design professional to establish mechanism and methodologies to achieve compliance whilst understanding the economic reality in what makes a project viable and what seems like a minor cost when applied singularly becomes exorbitant when applied across one hundred units.

New Homes

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Performance Based Solutions

Often we are approached by architects and other design professionals with designs or construction methods that do not fit neatly into the Deemed to Comply provisions of the National Construction Code/Building Code of Australia (NCC/BCA).  This can result in the requirement for an “Alternate Solutions” to be investigated, evaluated and utilized.

Scribe Energy Assessments and Inspections can assist in undertaking performance based ‘alternate solutions’ allowed within the NCC/BCA.  This can include performance criteria outlined with the NCC/BCA and undertaking the necessary calculation and evaluations to verify compliance with the requirements.

We are happy to work with your Building Surveyor to provide all the necessary documentation to satisfy them that the alternate solution meets the requirements for compliance under the NCC/BCA.

Commercial Compliance

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Greenstar Rating

As outlined on the Green Building Council of Australia website “Green Star is an internationally recognized sustainability rating system for the design, construction and operation of buildings, fit-outs and communities.”

The Green Star rating system was established in 2002 and is operated by the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA).  It was developed to provide a standard and method of verification for the provision of sustainable development/buildings within Australia.

In order to achieve a recognized standard and verification of a projects Green Star Rating the GBCA have developed and released a suite of ‘New Generation’ Rating Tools to assist in the evaluation and certification of projects.

Our team can work with you to establish and achieve the Green Star rating you desire for your project.  There are a number of commercial and financial benefits to making your project Green Star Rated with numerous case studies showing the increasing benefits to providing green buildings.

Going Beyond the Minimum

One of the primary drivers behind establishing Scribe Energy Assessment and Inspections is a desire to produce building and built environments that go beyond the bare minimum to achieve compliance with a code or standard. We believe strongly in the benefits of producing green buildings that goes beyond a lowering of energy bills.  Although decreased energy bills is a tangible and quantifiable method of determining successful design and implementation of green building principals the overall effects on health, livability and stress for occupant can be marked.

We also believe that the costs associated to achieve a sustainable building do not have to be prohibitive, they just need to be well considered and relevant to the project and the client.  We believe that a home should facilitate an owners lifestyle and respond to the changing demands placed on it.  This is often easier said than done but through collaborative approaches between designer/architect, energy consultant and Building certifier there is a great opportunity to implement simple design philosophies to accentuate and facilitate better built environments.  This can also translate to better commercial projects that result in productivity benefits, healthier places to work and live, enhanced marketability and a future-proofed asset that provides a higher return on investment.

We love working with clients that understand the benefits of experience and are keen to work with us to make their project better designed and more environmentally sensible.

Building Compliance and Certification

Scribe Energy Assessment and Inspections primary goal is to assist clients in achieving Energy Compliance and Certification for their projects.

Within the National Construction Code (NCC), there are two volumes of the Building Code of Australia (BCA);

  • Volume One addresses Class 2 – 9 buildings (generally commercial and multi-residential)
    • Energy Efficiency requirements are outlined under Section J of the code with relevant parts J0 to J8.
  • Volume Two addresses Class 1 & 10 buildings (generally single residential and residential scale structures like sheds)
    • Energy Efficiency requirements are outlined under Part 3.12 “Energy Efficiency”
    • Part 3.12 addresses building requirements and nominates necessary compliance methods

Under the National Construction Code/Building Code of Australia (NCC/BCA), there are two primary methods of compliance;

  1. Deemed-to-Satisfy –

Option 1 – Energy Rating

Class 1 & 10 compliance with Part 3.12.0 (a) (i) – being 6 star rating using House Energy Rating Scheme (HERS) accredited computer software.

Option 2 – Elemental Provisions

Class 1 & 10 Compliance with Part 3.12.0 (a) (ii)

Acceptable Construction Practice Part 3.12.5

Class 2 – 9 Compliance with Parts J1 to J7

  1. Alternative Solutions –
    1. Verification using a Reference Building (JV3 for Class 3-9 buildings)
    2. State Specific Energy Protocols
    3. Compliance with Part A0.10 (Class 3-9 buildings)
  • Alternate Solutions must demonstrate compliance with the relevant performance requirements in the NCC/BCA by using one or more of the following assessment methods
    • Verification method (using the reference building nominated under V2.6.2.2 of Volume Two or JV3 of Volume One, or any other verification method deemed acceptable by your building surveyor
    • Comparison with the Deemed-to-Satisfy provisions
    • Evidence of suitability
    • Expert Judgement