As part of SECURE, partners from the Association of Local Authorities in Västernorrland (Sweden) together with Solatum Hus&Hem AB and Sollefteå municipality, have implemented a series of pilots to improve the energy efficiency in two public elderly homes, Ärebo and Vallänge. This responds to one of the main outputs of the project: increase efficiency by 5% in, at least, 3 public buildings located in the project regions.
Ärebo, built in 1951, is composed by 31 apartments. In this building, SECURE partners have installed better outlets for car engine heaters and smart electricity meters. Furthermore, the radiator system has been adjusted to reduce energy consumption and improve the indoor climate for residents by giving same temperature in all apartments. Outside, they have replaced lightning with LED to improve energy efficiency and lighting quality. The results show a considerable reduction of 8% in energy use until now.
Converted into a modern residence in 1994, Vallänge is the second elderly home with 12 apartments to accommodate those citizens with more needs than the ones living at Ärebo. Here Solatum has replaced the existing electric boiler with a 48 kW heat pump installation. The heat is taken from 6 wells drilled to 280 metres depth in the bedrock. Moreover, the roof insulation is improved with 30 cm paper fibre and air handling unit is replaced by a new one with an energy efficient rotating heat recovery system. These measures will reduce the need for fossil fuel oil heating to almost zero. In the end, the reduction of energy use is approximately 50%. “Through the Secure Project, we have been given the opportunity to go into depth with a building in a way that would not otherwise be possible. It has given us new insights, both about the building itself and about how we as property owners can cooperate with the activities that are in our properties. We will take this with us in our other property stock”, says Magnus Nordenmark, energy manager at Solatum.
Good energy practices
From the beginning of the project in May 2016, Swedish partners have shared three good energy practices with the partnership:
- Snow cooling in Sundsvall Hospital, county council’s most acknowledge energy efficiency project to date.
- Efficient external illumination.
- Development of a network on climate and energy measures between municipalities in Västernorrland.
To keep going through a sustainable building and real estate sector, the next priority aspects are the cultural and behavioural changes to demonstrate the profitability that exists in investments linked to energy efficiency in terms of electricity and heat use. According to our partner Jennie Olofsson, the Association of Local Authorities in Västernorrland, the cooperation and development of the collaboration platforms in the construction and real estate sector is needed, in order to learn from each other with the experience feedback in buildings or energy efficiency measures, dissemination and good examples. ”Education and innovation is the other essential key to achieve energy efficiency improvements and it’s really important to have well-trained and competent operating personnel”.