Renovation and retrofitting of old buildings in times of climate crisis

Our newest publication, edited by Tomasz Jeleński, is now ready for download. It is a comprehensive guide that explains and presents the wide range of possible solutions (technologies and materials) to be implemented in each building element to minimise its environmental impact.

Better use of the existing building stock is one of the main ways to reduce the need for new construction and thus reduce the carbon footprint of the building sector. This can only be achieved by increasing the usability and energy performance of old buildings to extend their usefulness.

The algorithms for the optimal range of energy renovation (see: Chapter 7), a handy tool developed by Tomasz Jeleński, can be found in the publication. It helps to eliminate mistakes commonly made during building renovation and retrofitting and to indicate optimal solutions, taking into account specific factors and individual building conditions. Algorithms are available in an electronic version.

The guide is the result of a two-year project, Mitigation of climate change in historic buildings, which we implemented in cooperation with the Croatia Green Building Council from September 2020 to September 2022.

The book is available in three languages: English, Polish and Croatian: (Pdf, Epub and Mobi, Algoritmi).

Who are the authors of the guide?

Publication Renovation and retrofitting of old buildings in times of climate crisis, edited by Tomasz Jeleński, contains contributions made by the interdisciplinary group of experts:

  • Cezary Czemplik (Polish Natural Building Association)
  • Tomasz Jeleński (Cracow University of Technology)
  • Łukasz Konarzewski (Silesian Provincial Conservator of Monuments)
  • Piotr Kosiński (University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn)
  • Ewelina Pękała (Sendzimir Foundation)
  • Robert Wójcik (University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn)
  • Mihaela Zamolo (Croatia Green Building Council)
  • Anna Zaręba (Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń)

Who is the guide for?

The book is addressed to a broad audience looking for guidance on the following:

  • how to improve welfare, well-being, and quality of life in old buildings, while simultaneously decreasing carbon footprint,
  • how to properly ventilate the interior, avoid dampness, and decrease the risk of inundation and flooding while reducing heating costs, dust pollution and CO2 emissions,
  • how not to jeopardize the historic and aesthetic value of old buildings but to ensure their durability for future generations as valuable elements of the cultural environment.

A significant group of readers are public and private investors, as well as employees of local government departments who plan large-scale energy renovation works. We hope this publication’s guidelines will help choose the optimal scope of renovation measures, technologies and materials. In such a manner, the undertaken works are safe for buildings and their financial and environmental costs and total carbon footprint are reduced during the works and maintenance phase.