The barriers and obstacles to sustainable refurbishment.

Fletcher, Mathew (2015) The barriers and obstacles to sustainable refurbishment. [Dissertation]

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It is reported by Xing et al (2011) that 80% of the buildings which we will live in by the year 2050 have already been built and in addition to this, the UK Government (2010) confirmed that ‘the amount of CO2 emissions that construction can influence is significant, accounting for almost 47% of total CO2 emissions of the UK’ so it is clear to see why there is so much attention being placed on Sustainability at the moment and in recent times. There has been extensive discussion over Sustainable Development and the need to use more Sustainable methods of construction, more Sustainable Materials and more Sustainable Technologies for many years since the issue of Climate Change was first introduced following the Earth Summit in Rio 1992, but the impact that this has on the design and construction issue is a topic which often divides opinion.
Many people, included Baker (2009) report that ‘the focus on sustainable development and its assessment has mainly been on new build construction because new build can provide full sustainable design without being compromised by existing features, such as thermal properties, acoustic properties, natural lighting levels and layout’ so this study will aim to put more focus on the requirements associated with refurbishment projects and what potential problems are encountered when it comes to retaining the main features of these buildings and also providing like for like replacement for any items do that require replacement. This study will provide an outline of the facts and opinions as reported in several forms of literature and will challenge these by comparing this against the views and opinions of industry professionals who have undertaken a number of these projects in the past, and have real life experiences to share on the topic.

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