What is ECBC?
The Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC), was launched by Ministry of Power, Government of India in May 2007, as a first step towards promoting energy efficiency in the building sector.
The ECBC was developed by an Expert Committee, set up by India’s Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), with support and guidance from United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and significant inputs from various other stakeholders such as practicing architects, consultants, educational institutions and other government organizations.
The successful implementation of the code requires development of compliance procedures (compliance forms and development of field-test compliance forms and procedures), in addition to building capacity of architects/designers/builders/contractors and government official in States and Urban and Local Bodies (ULBs). It is also dependent on availability of materials and equipment that meet or exceed performance specifications specified in ECBC.
The ECBC provides design norms for:
- Building envelope, including thermal performance requirements for walls, roofs, and windows;
- Lighting system and control, including daylighting, and lamps and luminaire performance requirements;
- Comfort system and control (HVAC), including energy performance of chillers and air distribution systems;
- Electrical & Renewable energy systems
Building Envelope sets standards for Opaque construction, Fenestration, Air Leakages and Cool Roofs. It is estimated that optimisation of Building envelope can lead to minimum 15 to 20% of energy savings.
HVAC module sets standards for Refrigerative and Non- Refrigerative Cooling, Whole building design approach, Building commissioning and System balancing. Optimisation of HVAC can lead to minimum 26% of Energy savings.
Lighting section sets standards for efficient fixtures & lamps, efficient layout, daylight integration and lighting controls. Optimisation of lighting and lighting controls can lead to minimum 19% of Energy savings.
It has been calculated that optimisation if Building Envelope, Lighting, Controls for HVAC and Efficient Chillers can reduce 40 to 60% of Energy Consumption.
It prescribes the energy performance standards for new commercial buildings to be constructed across India. ECBC 2018 sets parameters for builders, designers and architects to integrate renewable energy sources in building design with the inclusion of passive design strategies. The code aims to optimise energy savings with the comfort levels for occupants, and prefers life-cycle cost effectiveness to achieve energy neutrality in commercial buildings.
- Buildings need to demonstrate minimum energy savings of 25% to be considered as ECBC-compliant.
- Additional improvements in energy efficiency would lead to higher grades like ECBC Plus (savings of 35%) or Super ECBC (savings of 50%).
- Adoption of ECBC 2017 for new commercial buildings throughout India will lead to estimated reduction of 50% in energy use by 2030. This will be equivalent to expenditure savings of Rs 35,000 crore and 250 million tonnes of CO2 reduction.