Reflections from the 25th International Passive House Conference


From an Irish perspective, there were a number of things which were really striking about the International Passive House conference this year:

  • The Irish are punching well above their weight with a much larger contingent than in recent years, delivering three presentations, and also receiving recognition by way of certification….
  • Irish manufactured components received Passive House certification this year:
    • Proair in Galway received a certificate for their PA600pli heat recovery ventilation system
    • Coillte Panel Products received three Passive House Components certificates:
  1. SMARTPLY PROPASSIV is the first and only product certified in the new Airtightness systems category
  2. MEDITE SMARTPLY PROPASSIV Type S (Timber construction system with solid timber) in the construction systems category
  3. MEDITE SMARTPLY PROPASSIV Type I (Timber construction system with engineered wood products) also in the construction systems category
  • The Vaventis Fresh-r HRV unit (manufactured by Aubren in Portlaoise) not only was awarded certification, but also won second prize in this year’s Component Award.
  • At the end of the conference there was a panel discussion with Prof. Dr. Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker (a leading German ecologist), leading German author Dr. Franz Alt and Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Feist. The really amazing thing about this was that the discussion focused almost entirely on ethics, the need for society to do the right thing and the role that the Passive House can play. Inspiring.
  • Of the 1000 delegates, 200 were Chinese. This is really significant and reflects the manner in which the Germans are ”courting” the Chinese, marrying the excellent technical abilities of the Germans with the ability to mass-produce at scale in China.
  • More and more regions are adopting the Passive House standard, with the entire country of Luxembourg adopting the standard this year, and using it as the basis for achieving NZEB. Just like Dun Laoghaire Rathdown….
  • But, perhaps the highlight for me was the visit to the original Passive House in Darmstadt. It was simply amazing to see the building and also the review of its performance. After all these years, the airtightness is still 0.22 air changes per hour and the annual energy consumption still less than 15 kWh per meter squared per annum…… A comfortable, healthy environment which costs almost nothing.

Dr Shane Colclough,

Chairman, PHAI


Thanks also to Tomas O Leary – Passive House Academy, for his conference review & images