An unprecedented opportunity to rebuild a more sustainable city in New Zealand arose due to the Canterbury Earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, when the central city was decimated by a series of earthquakes, which included an aftershock that produced one of the highest peak ground accelerations on record. New Zealand’s Building Codes for thermal performance and natural ventilation lag behind those of the rest of the western world. This paper carries out a comparative analysis of international best practice, guidance, codes and legislation surrounding sustainability and building performance. The paper challenges the minimum standards of the New Zealand Building Code (NZBC) and analyses energy rating tools proposed for domestic construction. A case study building, the ‘WHARE’ is used and dynamically thermally modelled to illustrate how the chosen pathways will affect a typical building. Comparisons of Irish, Australian and NZBCs, utilisation of Passive House thermal performance, and comparative analysis of LEED, DEAP and Homestar rating systems are carried out. The Living Building Challenge (LBC) rating tool is discussed in the context of ‘Tangata Whenua’, the indigenous people of the land. The findings provide information on the implications of the compliance frameworks and on the current performance standards. The paper also examines site context considerations embedded within the various rating frameworks and how they compare with the LBC.
building code, DEAP, energy rating, Homestar, LBC, LEED, passive, sustainability
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