Questionnaire about sustainability measures for new or existing buildings and urban development areas.


Guidelines for the use of the questionnaire

A. Water, rainwater and sewage
B. Indoor climate
C. Materials and constructions
D. Waste
E. Energy
F. Building and urban development area. Methods for sustainable development and sustainable urban management


Guidelines for the use of the questionnaire

The "Green Build" questionnaire is based on the Danish developed Green Build Tool, which works as an "energy and environmental point system". It has for example been used in the EU "Energie" supported project, "Green Solar Regions", where it was used in connection to a new urban development project with individual houses and apartment blocks for around 800 inhabitants in the municipality of Glostrup in Denmark. Here it is also being used for new building and retrofit projects in the municipalities of Roskilde and Copenhagen.

The Green Build tool has been developed by Peder Vejsig Pedersen from Cenergia in cooperation with architect Klaus Boyer Rasmussen from SolarVent. An interactive version of the Green Build questionnaire exists in the website (, which is operated by SolarVent.

In Glostrup the Green Build questionnaire was used by the municipality which asked interested builders to fill in the questionnaire when they were bidding for land. The aim was to identify a way to monitor energy efficient and sustainable building measures and to initiate a work that utimately could lead to a standard evaluation method in new and retrofit building projects.

The Green Build questionnaire is part of the so-called Green Build tool, which shall make it possible for European municipalities to assess and compare their individual environmental performance. It is here possible to work with the questionnaire concerning sustainable building measures in general. It can also be used by municipal authorities and builders who want to document sustainability in their own building and planning projects.

The answering of the questionnaire is divided into two phases. One phase for what is the intention to do and another phase is telling what is the aim to do just before the building project starts when the final economy is known.

Phase 1 is thus what the building owner intends to do with his building from the beginning.

Phase 2 is about what the builder intents to do just before the building project starts, when the economy is know. Can e.g. be delivered to the municipality in connection to the application for a building permit.

When energy and environmental points are attached to the questionnaire, then the achieved number of energy and environmental "points" in 6-7

different areas can be used to identity a rating between A and M which can be compared to aimed at local standards. To motivate sustainability measures and improved financing based on achieved point levels can be an efficient promotion tool.

The questionnaire is filled in by ticking off the questions which [are intended] / [will be fulfilled]. For example regarding energy savings. If the energy consumption is below for example 32 kWh/m2 all 3 lines should be ticked off as shown below:

Energy consumption for heating is below 46 kWh/m2
Energy consumption for heating is below 40 kWh/m2
Energy consumption for heating is below 35 kWh/m2

In other words: The fully filled in questionnaire will be a picture showing the degree of agreement between the original intentions and real facts in the project that will be realised.

Green Build questionnaire, including suggestion for "energy and environmental points" [ ]

A) Water, rainwater and sewage

1. Water saving toilets with differentiated flush is installed (3/6 litre) [1]

2. Rain water collection for garden irrigation is installed [1]

3. Water saving taps are installed: Toilet-sink max. 6 l/min., kitchen-sink max. 12 l/min. and shower max. 12 l/min [1]

4. A main water metering device is installed at each main plot of land (for use in main green accounting) [1]

5. Measures that minimise amount of rain water collected by the sewage system are carried out (permeable pavements, rain water ponds etc.) [1]

6. Rain water collection for use in washing machines is installed [2]

7. Rain water collection for use in toilet flushing is installed [3]

8. Washing- and dishwashing machines with minimised water consumption are installed [1]

9. Thermostat-mixing tabs of a type which can be serviced without the installation is opened is installed [1]

10. "Grey" wastewater is utilised 1) [4]

11. Individual water meters installed [1]

Building owner's suggestions for other measures within " Water, rainwater and sewage":

B) Indoor air climate

1. Air tightness of the building is measured to be less than 0.1 per hour [2]

2. Noise from installations is kept below 25 dB. [3]

3. Daylight optimisation 3) is performed and documented [2]

4. Passive solar energy design is applied. How the problems with overheating are coped with so the indoor temperature is not exceeding 26°C. Is documented [2]

5. In-door materials with in-door climate certification is applied, if such is available for the material type in question [1]

6. There is a minimum air exchange rate of 30 m³/h per person. The mechanical air exchange rate is at least 0.4/h and it is possible to have 0.6/h extra air exchange rate by manual opening of windows [2]

7. Balanced ventilation, exhaust and inlet air [2]

8. Moisture controlled ventilation [1]

9. Individually controlled ventilation [1]

Building owner's suggestions for other measures within " Indoor air climate":

C) Materials and constructions

1. Water installations without PVC is applied [1]

2. Cable work and related installations are without PVC [1]

3. Only building components totally free of PVC are applied [1]

4. Pressure-creosoted wood or similar is not applied 5) [1]

5. Materials with environmental certification are applied (please specify) [1]

6. Foam materials using CFC and HCFC is totally avoided [1]

7. Gravel replacement in the form of crushes concrete is applied [1]

8. As flooring materials are only applied wood, natural stone or ceramic tiles [1]

9. Insulation materials of recycled organic origin is applied (for example flax and paper granules) [1]

10. Surfaces are treated with materials that are indoor-climate certified [1]

11. Low "not renewable" energy consumption materials, 200 MJ/m² or less [3]

12. Use of bricks in interior walls [2]

13. Use of polyolefin floors [2]

14. Natural materials in walls [1]

15. Natural materials in flooring [1]

16. Natural materials in roofs [1]

17. Natural materials in ceilings [1]

18. Recycled materials in insulation [1]

19. Recycled bricks are used [1]

20. Recycled tiles are used [1]

21. Special care so constructions are protected against the local weather conditions, e.g. using extended eaves [2]

22. Use of flat roofs are avoided in rainy climates [2]

23. Documented lifetime optimised facades [2]

24. Documented lifetime optimised roofs [2]

25. Documented use of glass and windows to obtain a maximum utilisation of daylight [1]

26. Documented use of glass and windows so overheating in the summer is avoided (less than 26°C in a Danish climate) [1]

27. Documented use of glass and windows in a way so the yearly heat loss including solar gain is less than for the insulated walls [1]

28. Use of built-in solar shading design [1]

29. The building is designed to utilise natural and cross ventilation in the summer [1]

30. The building is made with a documented level of thermal mass as basis of storage of solar gains [1]

31. A building design is used which avoids the need for air condition/cooling systems [2]

32. Areas with a high amount of "free heat" gains is designed for natural or hybrid ventilation [2]

33. A detailed calculation programme is used as basis of achieving an optimised building design with respect to heat and cooling demand and comfortable temperatures [2]

Building owner's suggestion to other measures within "Materials and constructions"

D) Waste

1. Space for composting container is included in the garden plot [1]

2. Appropriate containers for fractionated waste disposal is built in both in kitchen and in the out door disposal place [1]

3. Green accounting is applied on the household waste [1]

4. The waste from the construction phase is sorted in as many fractions as the municipality can find an outlet for [1]

5. At each main plot of land space is reserved for "waste-islands" where the waste can be disposed off in fractions as paper, cardboard, metal, electronic waste etc [1]

6. Life cycle assessment of materials [1]

7. Documentation and maintenance guide concerning materials [2]

Building owner's suggestion to other measures within "Waste"

E) Energy

1. The building project is being coupled to the local district heating [1]

2. User controlled mechanical ventilation with heat recovery of outlet air is installed. The thermal efficiency rate must be at least 80% and the electrothermal ratio 9) must be at least 1:8. Power consumption max. 40 W and noise level from the installation must be below 25 dB [5]

3. Individual consumption displays are installed [2]

4. The number of hot water taps are limited and are placed centrally with short and small diameter tubing [2]

5. Main meters are placed at the entrance of each main plot of land, so losses from the distribution system can be monitored [1]

It is documented to the municipality that the heating system in the house ensures maximum cooling of district heated water and with the lowest possible return temperature [1]

7. Energy consumption for heating below 6) 46 kWh/m² is documented [2]

8. Energy consumption for heating below 6) 40 kWh/m² is documented [2]

9. Energy consumption for heating below 6) 35 kWh/m² is documented [2]

10. Energy consumption for heating below 6) 30 kWh/m² is documented [2]

11. Energy consumption for heating below 6) 25 kWh/m² is documented [2]

12. If a domestic hot-water tank is installed, this should be of the standardised type prepared for solar collectors [1]

13. A solar collector for domestic hot water is installed. Sized for 100% coverage in the summer period [3]

14. The housing design is performed in a way that maximises the contribution of passive solar energy without reducing the comfort in periods with high solar exposure [1]

15. Use solar walls as an alternative to conventional façade solutions - for example for preheating of ventilation air [1]

16. Integrated solar protection is installed where passive solar energy is utilised [1]

17. Both hot- and cold water taps are installed at washing- an dishwashing machines [1]

18. All white goods must be certified as "low-energy" types7) A. (As white household electrical appliances goods is understood freezers, refrigerators, kitchen range, washing- and dishwashing machines and tumbler drier [2]

19. Low-energy basic lighting is installed. Supplied with user-activated specific lighting [1]

20. Electricity savings amounting to 10% lower than normal is planned 8) (Documented) [2]

21. Electricity savings amounting to 20% lower than normal is planned 8) (Documented) [2]

22. A local, covered clothes drying ground is established [2]

23. Tumbler driers are not installed [1]

24. Tumbler driers of the condensing type is installed [1]

25. Only low-energy bulbs are applied [1]

26. Solar cells as power supply for circulation pump in the solar heating system is installed [2]

27. Solar cells as power supply for the ventilation fans are installed [2]

28. Grid-connected solar cells are installed [3]

29. Movement-activated lighting is installed [1]

30. Low energy lighting is installed in all common areas [1]

31. Common covered drying grounds are established at the different block of flats [2]

32. A common laundry is established [1]

33. Low temperature floor heating [1]

34. Energy management system survey [2]

35. Energy optimised windows, U-value of total window below 1.2 W/m²°C [3]

36. Use of condensing boilers [2]

37. Biomass based district heating [2]

38. Heat pumps with COP over 3.0 [2]

39. Local CHP plant [2]

40. Primary energy use which is not coming from renewable energy is less than 120 kWh/m², year [3]

41. Deviation of the longest building facade from south is less than 45° [2]

42. As a mean solar energy irradiation to buildings should not be reduced by more than 20% because of shadows, orientation and topography [2]

43. The relation between building surface A and volume V should be A/V < 0.65 m [2]

Building owner's suggestion to other measures within "Energy"

F) Building and urban development area. Methods for sustainable development and sustainable urban management

1. A "Use & Maintenance" manual is delivered and/or planned for each housing unit. This describes all the types of building materials and technical devices with information about maintenance and relevant supplier information, etc. [2]

2. The Building owner/contractor can document an environmental management system (not necessarily certified), which ensures a minimal environmental impact in the construction phase [2]

3. Green accounting is performed for each building (monitoring of water-, heat- and power consumption) [2]

4. Use of technical installations are done according to the manual mentioned under item 1 [1]

5. The building is optimised according to a total economic lifecycle costs assessment (assessment of investments where operation and maintenance costs are taken into consideration). Can e.g. be done by help of the "Optibuild" tool which can be downloaded from [2]

6. The design is planned for an easy access to technical installations [1]

7. The building project is placed in the existing terrain [1]

8. Existing vegetation is saved and protected in the construction phase [1]

9. Unheated additions are connected to the main building (porch, garage etc.) [1]

10. Extra protection of façades is instituted by means of extended eaves (minimum 700 mm) [1]

11. All fittings in piping systems are easily accessible (non-destructive inspection) [1]

12. Only few modifications are needed to change the housing unit for disabled/older people [1]

13. Differentiated protection of wood is performed (functional wood-protection), dependent of how it is exposed to the weather [1]

14. Joining methods and construction principles are chosen so reconstruction/additions/reuse will be less problematic [1]

15. Green accounting is performed at each main plot of land (monitoring of water-, heat- and power consumption) [2]

16. Technical installations in house blocks are placed in a noise core 10) [1]

17. A green common area is included in each main plot of land [1]

18. A "nature playing ground" is included in each main plot of land [1]

19. Energy efficiency of realised building project will be assessed by comparing a monitored energy signature, e.g. by help of an energy management system, with a reference energy signature calculated prior to the realisation phase [2]

20. A quality and performance verification process is started already in connection to the design work. Here performance demands and performance indicators are identified [2]

21. A quality assurance procedure is performed both in connection to design and realisation by help of "specialist" companies (check of design and tender material, inspection procedures and performance tests as part of the building process) [3]

22. Check of cold bridges, airtightness, ventilation design, solar energy systems, heating systems, electrical appliances, water systems and waste handling systems as part of performance check procedure [4]

23. Optimisation and documentation of energy use, heat and cooling demand (yearly and daily) temperatures and daylighting, by help of a detailed calculation programme like "Rensim" [3]

Building owner's suggestion to other measures within " Urban development area and sustainable urban management"

0-20 =poor | 21-50 =acceptable | 51+ =great


1) Grey waste water is defined as water from sink and shower.
2) Air tightness is performed after the finishing of the building.
3) Daylight optimisation according to DS 700
4) Intensified noise regulations according to NR-curves (Noise Rating Curves)
5) If pressure impregnated wood is applied it must be NTR-marked or impregnated with compounds approved by the Danish Environmental Agency.
6) Energy consumption amounting to e.g. 46 kWh/m2 means that the consumption must be maximum 46 kWh pr. m2 floor area per year .
7) On the Danish "Electricity Saving Fund's" website there is information about energy marking of household appliances and price reduction terms for larger scale purchases.
8) It must be documented that electricity savings higher than the normal (4 kwh/m2) is obtained for the building.
9) The electrothermal ratio for heat recovery systems is the ratio between the electricity consumption and the savings in heat consumption (documented)
10) Noise core is defined as a shaft, which ensures that noise from technical installations is not exceeding the values given in the Danish building regulations.

The statements about water savings originate from the recommendations from "Københavns Vand" (Copenhagen Water), a publication called "Miljøorienteret byfornyelse og nybyggeri", the municipality of Copenhagen, 1999.