World’s First Zero-Emission Centre Located in Dublin
With its official opening in September, the Convention Centre Dublin (CCD) is an example of state of the art sustainable development building design. Its design is in accordance with the International Standards Organisation (ISO) 14001 and will be seeking accreditation within 18 months of opening.
The centre is Ireland’s first purpose-built convention centre, located in Spencer Dock in the heart of Dublin city and offers 22 multi-functional, flexible rooms suitable for meetings, conferences and exhibitions – from small corporate meetings to international congresses. The building design focuses on reducing overall energy consumption by using an integrating system throughout the venue; the Integrated Building Automated System (IBAS). This system controls lighting, security, ventilation and manages the total energy consumption of the centre with the purpose of reducing energy use while maintaining a comfortable environment. According to ICLEC, there are discussions underway with the Electricity Supply Board about supplying the centre’s electricity needs through wind and tidal power [ICLEC 2010].
Another interesting feature within the design is the use of a thermal wheel heat recovery system and an Ice Storage Thermal Unit (ISTU), which chills water overnight to form large ice blocks that melt during the day to provide air conditioning for the entire building. According to the thermal wheel supplier UK Exchangers Ldt., thermal wheels are installed across hot and cold air ducts and as the wheel rotates, the surface is heated by the hot air stream. When the rotation passes through the cold air duct, the wheel cools down, thereby transferring heat. Energy recovery with this type of system can be over 70% of conventional systems.
The Centre also boasts construction using 6,000 tonnes of Low Carbon Concrete (LCC). This “green cement” is made from GGBS (Ground Granulated Blast-Furnace Slag), a by-product of the steel industry and releases 16 times less carbon emissions than conventional cement during its manufacture and 25% less carbon emissions in the construction phase of a building [Low Carbon Concrete 2008].
Finally, the project managers have invested in carbon credits using Voluntary Carbon Standards [ICLEC 2010]. They also help delegates to keep their journey carbon neutral by offering international visitors the opportunity to offset their carbon emissions from air travel using an online carbon calculator. The managers seek expertise from Emission Zero consultancy; a division of Ecocem Materials Ltd which aims to reduce the carbon footprint of consumers and business in Ireland, enabling them to become carbon neutral through investing in Verified Emission Reductions (VERs).