Shining Examples – The Casa Municipal Do Ambiente in Almada
What are Shining Examples?
The idea behind "Shining Examples" is to promote good practice so that local authorities can learn from each other and discover that "shining examples are everywhere and in a town near to you"..
A Shining Example does not necessarily have to have a high efficiency rating – a rapid increase in efficiency, for example, or original marketing strategy can also be worthy of this title.
"Sustainability begins at home" – The Casa Municipal Do Ambiente (Municipal Environmental Building) in Almada (PT)
The Casa Municipal Do Ambiente is situated in the centre of Almada. Following the implementation of Local Agenda 21 in Almada, this building was refurbished with the aim of providing an appropriately (energy and environment conscious) home for the Environmental Planning Department, Ecolibrary and the Local Energy Management Agency of Almada.
The fact that the building had been built in the 1930’s meant the greatest challenge was to maintain the original architectural design features while at the same time incorporate energy and environmental concerns – to match both the aims of Almada’s Local Agenda 21 process and the aims of the organisations it houses.
The reason for selecting it as a Shining Example was its comprehensive refurbishment realising energy efficiency measures in all the main fields: building envelope, lighting and appliances and heating/cooling.
Furthermore, a tight monitoring and evaluation network was established including, for example, heat metering and monthly energy readings. The results of these evaluations are communicated to the staff in internal meetings. This resulted in a high level of awareness as well as the identification of new energy-saving opportunities. In 2005 the building was rated A for its energy performance, B for CO2 emissions and C for water consumption.
All of these measures make it a role model for other local authorities planning interventions on their buildings.
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