Why high-performance buildings?

High-performance building standards lie at the foundation of how we build better.

The Climate Challenge

We are already experiencing the effects of climate change in Australia. Our summers are hotter, the droughts are severe as are the floods and bush fires. The city of Melbourne is already taking measures to protect against predicted rise in sea level.

Growing evidence shows changing climate is harming communities around the world.

In 2015, 200 countries acknowledged this and committed to the Paris Accord. To meet this target, we all need to use less energy. Burning fuel for energy releases greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change.

Melbourne: A city that cares for its environment

Environmental sustainability is the basis of all Future Melbourne goals.

The City of Melbourne has set an ambitious target for Melbourne to become a carbon neutral city by 2020.

​In conjunction with our key stakeholders, we have developed a plan for collaborative action. The Zero Net Emissions by 2020 strategy focuses on creating a sustainable future for the municipality of Melbourne with the building sector a primary focus for reaching this goal.

Benefits of High Performance Buildings

Passive House buildings are comfortable, healthy and quiet. Because they are designed well and built to last, they work well and are simple to use and maintain.

You know what you’re getting with a Passive House building. Knowing a Passive House building is built better, you feel better.

  • Passive House buildings remain comfortable during power outages and extreme weather.
  • Their maintenance and energy costs remain low over the long term.
  • They maintain market value over time.
  • And because they use as little as 1/10th of heating and cooling energy that other buildings use, their reduced impact on climate change and outdoor air quality makes you feel better, too.

Operating, maintenance and energy costs are lower for Passive House buildings than for conventional buildings. This makes it an effective solution for any building type over the long term.

  • Building a Passive House building adds marginal costs to the overall capital construction cost, but simple mechanical systems and robust, quality-assured construction can reduce building costs.
  • High-quality components and building durability reduce long-term maintenance costs for occupants.
  • Drastically reduced energy use provides immediate savings.
  • Passive House buildings maintain market value over time.

The Passive House Standard has been used for over 25 years to create highly efficient buildings in all climate zones, from the Antarctic to the equator.

Passive House buildings rely upon four things:

  • efficient design
  • insulation
  • air tightness
  • clever ventilation

Simplicity carries through in the use and operation of Passive House buildings. No special computerized controls are needed. Stable indoor conditions mean building occupants remain comfortable without bundling up in sweaters and extra socks in cool weather.

The Passive House Standard

The Australian Passive House Association promotes the international Passive House (Passivhaus) high-performance building standard as a simple, quality-assured approach to designing and constructing better buildings. The Passive House Standard is a proven methodology for achieving high-performance from buildings of all types, and is the only internationally recognized performance-based building energy standard.

Case Studies

Click on the links below to review case studies of tested and proven high-performance buildings.

Caramar Passivhaus, Metro Melbourne’s First Passive House 
Brighton East, VIC