Effective indoor air quality for energy-efficient homes: a comparison of UK rating systems

Grainne McGill, Lukumon Oyedele, Keith McAllister, Menghao Qin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    The use of sustainable assessment methods in the UK is on the rise, anticipating the future regulatory trajectory towards zero carbon by 2016. The indisputable influence of sustainable rating tools on UK building regulations conveys the importance of evaluating their effectiveness in achieving true sustainable design, without adversely effecting human health and wellbeing. This paper reviews indoor air-quality (IAQ) issues addressed by UK sustainable assessment tools, and the potential trade-offs between building energy conservation and IAQ. The barriers to effective adoption of IAQ strategies are investigated, including recommendations, suggestions, and future research needs. The review identified a fundamental lack of IAQ criteria in sustainable assessment tools aimed at the residential sector. The consideration of occupants’ health and well-being should be paramount in any assessment scheme, and should not be overshadowed or obscured by the drive towards energy efficiency. A balance is essential.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)159-173
    JournalArchitectural Science Review
    Issue number2
    Early online date23 Sep 2015
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • sustainable assessment tools
    • indoor air quality
    • sustainability criteria
    • energy-efficient Homes
    • UK eco-homes
    • zero carbon


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