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Qatar to unveil its first Passive House in 2013

Qatar will be home to its first energy-efficient passive house early next year. The Qatar Green Building Council, together with Barwa Real Estate Company and Kahraama, will launch this ground-breaking experiment in the regionís green building industry. The Passive house boasts of an ultra low energy usage, and an airtight building design that uses very minimal energy for space cooling, thereby reducing its environmental footprint.

The three partners yesterday jointly announced that the deal for countryís first passive house project, namely Baytna (our home) in Arabic, has been signed to develop the Qatar Case Study Passive House project at the Four Seasons Hotel.

The two houses will be built besides each other, in proximity to Barwa Village in Mesaimer. A passive house villa and a conventional villa will be built to one-star rating of Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) in Qatar. The countryís first passive house will bear all the comforts of modern dwelling, but, will consume 50 percent less energy, water, and carbon dioxide.

The villas, spanning an area of 225 square metres, will be ready by January 2013, and the two houses will be occupied by similar-sized families, with atleast one child each.

The project aims to educate the public about the concept of Passive House. It will strengthen discussions about green living and sustainable practices among the public, to implement it in their daily living and improve Qatar's profile in the field of sustainable and green building, said Ahmad Abdullah, Deputy Group CEO, Barwa Real Estate said.

The Qatar Green Building Council is supporting this project, which is the main pillar of the energy saving campaign in Qatar. The testing and commissioning of the houses will end by March 2013. Energy, potable water and solid wastes will be monitored for six months prior to occupation and the two families will move into the villas by mid-2013.

Later, the project will be handed over to Kahraama.

Initially the occupants will inhabit the houses without any prior training of how to minimize energy and water consumption without any prior education about the environmental principles that underline the development of the homes. However, over a period of monitoring to establish a regular base for energy consumption patterns, the occupants of both houses will be offered an intense educational and operational training package.

The project will work to obtain Passive House Building Certification and GSAS Certificate, and establish the benchmark for all future buildings in Qatar. Among the other scientific partners of the project are Texas A&M University in Qatar, AECOM, Siemens, Global Sustainability System, and EPS Qatar.

Posted on 20/11/2012

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