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Germany Requiring Renewable Energy for Every Building

Buildings are responsible for about one-third of global energy use. But there are many ways to change that equation; strengthening building codes is one clear arena. In my community, for example, 20 years ago, the ceiling "R" (insulation level) requirement was R-13, today it is R-38 (though expert guidance is "at least R-45" and most of us who care about energy strive for above R-50). That sort of change leads to significant reductions in energy use.

Well, the German government has just announced new building codes that will change the landscape when it comes to distributed renewable power: Starting 1 January 2009, all new homes built in German will have to meet 14 percent of total energy consumption for heating and tramadol legality domestic hot water with renewable power.

Heating is a fruitful space for renewable power, especially in new construction, as this can rely on solar thermal heating especially associated with radiant heating systems (whether in radiators or in the floors/walls). Thus, solar hot water systems can easily beat the 14 percent target. In Vermont, a rough corollary for Germany, one can meet 50 percent of home hot water requirements with solar hot water with "excellent architectural flexibility." And the financial payoff for that solar hot water will be relatively quick (dependent on fuel prices, installation cost, etc., perhaps 5-8 years).

Heating buildings is cialis price about 40 percent of total German energy consumption with just six percent of that renewable power today. The overall target for 2020 is 14 percent. Thus, starting in 2010, older buildings will require renovation to levitra pharmacy bring renewable contribution to their heating to at least ten percent.

As per the Renewable Energy reporting, there are a number of levitra buylevitra onlin things going on we recommend cheapest cialis prescription with this bill that will help spark action:

  • Fines of up to 500,000 Euros ($700,000) for failing to meet these requirements;
  • $350 million Euros / year in subsidies for helping homeowners install renewable energy systems (including solar and wood stoves)
  • Home energy ratings will be introduced in 2008, which will create a favorable public statement for more efficient buildings.
  • Baden-Wurttemberg already has a law requiring new buildings provide 20 percent of their heating and hot water requirements from renewable sources.
  • There is an associated effort to improve home energy efficiency with, for example, increased insulation.

The German government estimates that 1960s homes use four times the energy for heating than a modern, energy-efficient home.

The bill is estimated to have an annual cost across the economy of 31 billion euros per year. But, the 36 billion euros per year in lower bills for coal, oil, and gas will offset this without considering other benefits (such as reduced pollution, reduced requirements to generic viagra on line move that coal, oil, gas, etc).

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Comments (8)Add Comment
You know what the sad thing is?
written by Solar Coupons, December 13, 2007
The sad thing is Germany has similar solar resources to that of Alaska,yet more solar is installed there per capita than anywhere in the world. The US is sitting on the Saudi Arabia of solar energy and we just let it bounce right off our roofs. Germany's renewable energy job force is 250,000 strong because they embrace common sense programs like the one this article describes. Another great German program is the levitra 100mg Renewable Energy Sources Act that lets German's sell excess solar energy back to the utilities for triple the market rate (called a 'feed-in tariff'). That makes solar a better investment than most stocks!
Top Marks to German Politicians
written by weee recycling, December 13, 2007
In the US and the UK we get so used to politicians talking and not delivering. In Germany they just get on with it and deliver what people want.
Would that our politicians listened to the people rather than the developers.
I'm curious
written by Albert, December 13, 2007
I'm curious how this will work for buildings that are completely shaded by trees or other buildings. I would love to tramadol overseas foreign pharmacy have solar or wind power, but my home has hills with tall trees all around it, so little wind or sun reaches it, especially in summer. The energy needed by my home is levitra available in india lower than most because it is small and shaded in summer. Would lower energy consumption count for anything or would I need to make some arrangement with a neighbor to meet those standards if I lived in Germany?

written by Pelle, December 13, 2007
Cool - go Germany! :) Good that they dare to be unique!
To Albert ...
written by ASiege, December 13, 2007
There are many "renewable" paths out there in addition to solar. They include high-efficiency biomass stoves, for example, as one of the options. Would geothermal be an option? Personalized wind? Have to imagine that it is not totally without ability to flex toward the type of challenge that you suggest.
Even better yet...
written by Christian, December 13, 2007
...I happen to buy discount cialis live in Germany and am currently in a distance education programme learning to be a technician for renewable energy systems (I have a degree in Computer Science, but I figured the RE systems degree might well be more valuable in 20 years). The programme is highly subsidized by the government, so that you can get a high-class academic education in RE systems design and canadian cialis uk environmental sciences while paying very low fees.

The whole RE industry is booming here, and companies expect that the boom will create more than 100.000 new jobs in RE technology within the next 5 years. Lots of 120 cod tablet tramadol people here are beginning to really study the technology and getting ready for the RE revolution. Those are quite interesting perspectives for every RE enthusiast like me....
those building integrated solar tiles
written by Mark Bartosik, December 13, 2007
There are about 3 companies in the USA that make building integrated solar tiles like those in the picture. One of those companies only sells for new construction. OpenEnergy ( makes tiles like these for retrofit.

Currently, my house is the ONLY ONE on the east coast of the USA fitted with the OpenEnergy tiles. Just ONE.

That's how far the buy tramadol without a prescription USA is behind Germany.

I've heard goals set by UK government that are following Germany's lead, but I'm not sure how concrete they are.
insulation level
written by Andy, January 25, 2008
Can you explain "R" (insulation level)? We have a different way in describing an insulation level.

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