Schoolhaus® has been developed to deliver outstanding value, speed in construction, radically efficient buildings and superior educational spaces.
Excellent value is represented in the pricing and the speed of delivery is beyond debate.
Less understood, is the impact of our methodology on both climate change and the operating costs (and thereby the lifecycle costs) of the building.
Schoolhaus® scores ‘off the scale’ on both fronts; it also provides students with a superior learning environment and teachers with a valuable educational tool.
“Students and staff have been blown away by our new facilities. When you compare this to our main school building you cannot compare the technology and reduced running costs. The quality is fantastic – as a teaching area I do not think you can better what we have here with our new build.”
– Andrew Coombs, Principal, Redmoor Academy
Schoolhaus®’ impact on climate change targets is expressed in two ways:
- Embodied carbon in the manufacturing process
- In-use building emissions reduction and carbon displacement
The manufacturing process – The impact of moving the build process off-site and into a controlled factory environment:
- Embodied energy in the design and manufacturing process: up to 67% less energy is required to produce a modular building compared to an equivalent traditionally-built project (Source: Arup)
- Fewer vehicle movements: there are up to 90% fewer vehicle movements to site, further reducing disruption, congestion and carbon emissions
- Improved recycling of materials: cut-out sections from the manufacture of composite panels can be recycled back into the product
In-use emissions reduction and carbon displacement
The Schoolhaus® design reduces carbon emissions “one building at a time” – and its impact on climate change targets needs to be addressed in context. However, it is a real and proven technology, not experimental, and the increase in impact can be exponential.
Independent University of East Anglia (UEA) Report: Schoolhaus® Embodied Carbon
In April 2016, The Adapt Low Carbon Group based at UEA completed an embodied carbon assessment of a Schoolhaus® project.
In summary, the embodied carbon emissions estimated for the Kingswood Schoolhaus® were 42 tonnes of CO2 eq. or 260 kg CO2 per m2. This included CO2 estimates for production, transport and end of life.
In comparison, the benchmark data as published in the 2010 Atkins Master planning tool considered average embodied carbon for new buildings in the education sector to be:
- 845kg CO2 /m2 for University Buildings
- 690kg CO2 /m2 for Primary or Nursery
- 925kg CO2 /m2 for Secondary Schools
The report shows emphatically that there is a significant environmental benefit of our design: in terms of transportation, materials choice and off-site manufacturing. Our building registered an embedded carbon score of just 260kg CO2 eq per m², significantly lower than any traditional on-site build.
The findings concluded that the Schoolhaus® reading was lower than that for any other recorded building.
Impact on the environment and energy in use:
- Air leaking in and out of any building inhibits energy efficiency and undermines thermal insulation
- By minimising air leakage, a warm, draught-free internal environment is delivered
- Full scale tests for air permeability have shown that modular buildings perform up to 70% better than Building Regulations requirements, significantly improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions
The nature of modular systems means the pre-heat period is reduced, leading to a reduction in heating energy costs and a corresponding reduction in carbon emissions. The Schoolhaus® developments have all been assessed for Energy Performance Certificates (see our Schoolhaus® projects) and subsequently lodged on the Non-Domestic EPC Register.
Independent Arup Report: Schoolhaus® Energy Efficiency
Arup undertook an independent appraisal of energy efficiency within the UK schools estate – based on a wide range of published data – to contrast the performance of a Schoolhaus® building.
Their report concluded:
- The Schoolhaus® building design consumes less energy in operation than it generates through on-site renewables. Therefore, these building are able to achieve an A+ EPC Asset Rating and an A0 iDEC Operational Rating.
- An example Schoolhaus® building has a more favourable iDEC Operational Rating than any other specific site assessment recorded through the TSB Building Performance Evaluation programme or Arup Buildings in Operation process, even when we ignore the added-value contribution of on-site renewables. The building has an iDECA0 rating at -75kg CO2m-2, which comfortably surpasses the iDECC 37.5kg CO2-2yr-1 target specified in Section 188.8.131.52.2 of PSBP2.
- Arup estimate that the Schoohaus (as per study sample) generates more revenue from renewable energy incentives (Feed-in Tariff) than the cost of the electricity consumed over a year, with an annual net income of £500 per 100m2 per year. This compares to average data from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors – which looks at other typical building developments over the last 10 years – showing an average net utility cost of £600 per 100m2 per year for a typical new school building.
- Additionally, the Schoolhaus® design and specification delivers a net positive generation of renewable energy, thus having an inverse relationship between operational emissions and space utilisation. This means that concerns around contributions towards global warming need not be a motivation for constraining the provision of space to pupils of a Schoolhaus®. Such a characteristic should benefit pupil welfare and is in contrast to any other known existing school building in the UK.