Denmark's first carbon neutral public building inaugurated
Green Lighthouse, Denmark’s first CO2 neutral public building, demonstrates that sustainable design is not a question of stuffing the building with brazen, expensive high-tech gadgets, but that it starts with good old fashioned common sense. In fact 70% of the reduction of the energy consumption is the direct consequence of architectural design.
To achieve carbon neutrality, many green design features were incorporated to reduce energy use and provide a holistic and healthy indoor environment for students and faculty. The building itself was oriented to maximize its solar resources, while windows and doors are recessed and covered with automatic solar shades to minimise direct solar heat gain inside the building. Plentiful daylight and natural ventilation are provided by means of the carefully placed VELUX skylights, Velfac windows and the generous atrium. Finally, sensibly integrated state-of-the-art technology has been applied: heat recovery systems, photovoltaic panels, solar heating, LED lighting, phase change materials, geothermal heat are just some of the technologies that are seamlessly integrated into the building.
The building is going to serve as a showcase for sustainable building at the UN’s Climate Conference here in Copenhagen in December later this year. Minister for Science, Technology and Innovation, Helge Sander states; “Everyone who has had a share in the Green Lighthouse project has every reason to be proud. It is a stylish, exemplary, climate-friendly construction, which will help focus the attention on Danish know-how during the forthcoming climate summit. At the same time, the building can serve as inspiration to other universities and builders, while also contributing to the construction industry's knowledge base of sustainable building solutions”.
The parties involved in the project are the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, the University of Copenhagen, the City of Copenhagen and the window producers VELUX and VELFAC.