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Gold World Habitat Award for retrofitting project

A ground-breaking project that retrofits old buildings to reduce energy use has been awarded the prestigious Gold World Habitat Award.
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This award recognises the project’s innovative and financially sustainable approach to addressing climate change and improving energy efficiency in the building sector.

The Energy Challenge of Old Buildings

Old buildings play a major role in the climate crisis. They are responsible for a significant portion of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as being uncomfortable and expensive to live in. However, retrofitting old buildings to improve their energy efficiency is often costly and time-consuming.

A Holistic Solution

The Energiesprong project was developed to overcome these challenges. The system itself is revolutionary, combining prefabricated insulated [Mv1] wall and roof panels along with a range of smart green technologies. These prefabricated panels are directly attached to the existing building structure, which significantly expedites the construction process and minimizes disruptions for residents. The in-country teams also support organisations to follow the Energiesprong idea and with financial and regulatory challenges, helping them to overcome potential stumbling blocks and implement a system unique to their needs.

Cost-effective, Sustainable and Transferable Retrofits

Energiesprong retrofits can be completed in as little as seven to ten days. They can achieve a remarkable 70-80% reduction in a building’s energy consumption, whilst generating their own energy through integrated renewable technology. Increasingly, the retrofits also use bio-based materials which have a smaller carbon footprint than traditional materials. To date, the Energiesprong Global Alliance has helped to implement over 10,000 projects across seven countries in Europe and North America, demonstrating its replicability in different contexts.

Recognition for Climate Impact

The project’s Gold Award at the World Habitat Awards underscores its clear and efficient approach to addressing the climate, financial and regulatory challenges posed by old housing stock. It can also help to mitigate the effects of the cost-of-living and energy crises for tenants on low incomes[Mv2] .

Maimunah Modh Sharif, Executive Director of UN Habitat: “I applaud Energiesprong for its cost-effective, tenant-friendly approach to deep, net-zero housing retrofits. Importantly, it addresses the potential risks posed by the energy transition, mitigating inequalities, housing loss and displacement.”

Leilani Farha, Global Director of The Shift: “The model has ensured minimal disruptions for tenants, making it a very practical solution that maintains security of tenure, particularly important for low-income households, who are the focus of this project.”

David Ireland, CEO of World Habitat: Energiesprong is a best-practice retrofit, which reaps the benefits of standardisation but is also flexible in product delivery.”

Sanne de Wit, Energiesprong: “We are very proud of winning this award and we look forward to learning from the other awarded projects. We hope that this award can help us realize our new ambitions; setting up new value chains for construction, where we now also work together with farmers to develop bio-based building materials.”

Resident beneficiary of a retrofit from Nottingham UK: “I would honestly say you’d be absolutely nuts not to have this done. It is a world of difference. It’s incomparable how bad this house was before. Now I can’t moan about anything.”

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