PAS 2038 is the new standard for retrofitting energy efficiency measures in non-domestic and commercial buildings.

The Climate Change Act, as amended in 2019, commits the UK to ‘net zero’ by 2050. The built environment accounts for roughly 40% of UK greenhouse gas emissions, with around 20% of this coming from non-domestic buildings, according to the Climate Change Committee. To meet this target significant improvements in the energy efficiency of current building stock will be required. This will include upgrading the existing 2 million non-domestic buildings.

What is PAS 2038?

PAS 2038 is the new standard for retrofitting energy efficiency measures in non-domestic buildings. PAS 2038 will cover all non-domestic and commercial buildings other than dwellings, but it will also be used for multi-residential buildings such as student housing, hotels, etc.

PAS2038 will follow on from PAS2035, the domestic standard of retrofit. However, PAS 2038 differs by inducing different options depending on the size, complexity, and heritage of the building.

PAS 2038 will follow the ‘whole building’ retrofit approach. This aims to:

–          Reduce the environmental impact of buildings

–          Improve the energy efficiency of buildings

–          Enable buildings to use low or zero-carbon energy sources

–          Improve comfort, well-being, and the health and safety of occupants and visitors

–          Improve the functionality, viability, and durability of buildings

–          Protect and enhance the architectural and cultural heritage of a building.

Non-domestic retrofit process

The PAS 2038 Standard covers the management of the retrofit process from inception to completion. The process is like PAS 2035, however, it does not include risk pathways in the methodology. The stages in the process include:

–          Appointment of a project team and agreement of an initial brief

–          Assessment of the building

–          Elevation of improvement options

–          Agreement on intended outcomes

–          Preparation of an improvement plan

–          Carry out the retrofit work, testing, commissioning, and handover of the retrofitted building

–          Fine-tuning the performance to meet or surpass the intended targets

–          Evaluation of the project to confirm outcomes, identify any unintended consequences, and specify any remedial works required

Buildings over 1,000m2 need to have their whole greenhouse gas emissions life cycle calculated.

An alternative approach for non-domestic buildings smaller than 500m2 will be to follow the PAS 2035 route for domestic properties. The standard only permits this if you follow the following rules:

Where does PAS 2038 Apply?

PAS 2038 can be applied to all non-domestic retrofit activity. It can be used in projects that are initiated, procured, funded, and delivered by national or local government schemes.

Roles within the Non-domestic retrofit process

Unlike PAS 2035, there is no Retrofit Coordinator. Instead, the ‘Retrofit Lead Professional’ oversees the project from inception to completion. The choice of Retrofit Lead Professional depends upon the complexity and nature of the project. You need to select someone with the correct level of skills.

The complexity and nature of the project will also influence the project team and the qualifications needed within the project team. A qualified Non-Domestic Energy Assessor with knowledge of ISBEM and dynamic model simulation (DSM) will play an important role in the team and framework of the process.

The Non-domestic retrofit assessment

As part of the assessment of the building, a Retrofit/Energy Assessor will need to be suitably qualified. They will also need to appoint a lead assessor if there are more than one assigned to the project.

The assessment of the building will involve four main areas:

–          The context of the building

–          The condition of the building and all its elements

–          The occupancy assessment

–          The energy performance of the building

Additionally, although not directly required by PAS 2038, carrying out an air pressure test, thermal imaging survey and ventilation testing should be carried out during the assessment of the building. This can provide much more information to the assessor and the retrofit team.

It would improve the selection of options available for the building, provide advice on how to improve issues and give a much better understanding of the energy efficiency of the building.

What’s next?

PAS 2038 offers a clear roadmap to improve your non-domestic building’s energy efficiency and meet upcoming regulations. Our team of qualified professionals can guide you through every stage of the PAS 2038 process, from initial assessment to project completion.

We are experts in decarbonisation as qualified Domestic Energy Assessors, Non-Domestic Energy Assessors, Retrofit Assessors, Thermographers, Ventilation and Air Tightness Testers who are currently working on multiple retrofit schemes across the UK, helping our clients conform to the current PAS 2035 Scheme.

Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your building’s specific needs and how PAS 2038 can help you achieve your sustainability goals.

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