Advancing urban analytics for energy transitions : Data-driven strategic planning for citywide building retrofitting
Abstract: Decarbonisation of the building stock is essential for energy transitions towards climate-neutral cities in Sweden, Europe and globally. Meeting 1.5°C scenarios is only possible through collaborative efforts by all relevant stakeholders — building owners, housing associations, energy installation companies, city authorities, energy utilities and, ultimately, citizens. These stakeholders are driven by different interests and goals. Many win-win solutions are not implemented due to lack of information, transparency and trust about current building energy performance and available interventions, ranging from city-wide policies to single building energy service contracts. The emergence of big data in the building and energy sectors allows this challenge to be addressed through new types of analytical services based on enriched data, urban energy models, machine learning algorithms and interactive visualisations as important enablers for decision-makers on different levels.The overall aim of this thesis was to advance urban analytics in the building energy domain. Specific objectives were to: (1) develop and demonstrate an urban building energy modelling framework for strategic planning of large-scale building energy retrofitting; (2) investigate the interconnection between quality and applications of urban building energy data; and (3) explore how urban analytics can be integrated into decision-making for energy transitions in cities. Objectives 1 and 2 were pursued within a single case study based on continuous collaboration with local stakeholders in the city of Stockholm, Sweden. Objective 3 was addressed within a multiple case study on participatory modelling for strategic energy planning in two cities, Niš, Serbia, and Stockholm. A transdisciplinary research strategy was applied throughout.A new urban building energy modelling framework was developed and demonstrated for the case of Stockholm. This framework utilises high-resolution building energy data to identify buildings and retrofitting measures with the highest potential, assess the change in total energy demand from large-scale retrofitting and explore its impact on the supply side. Growing use of energy performance certificate (EPC) data and increasing requirements on data quality were identified in a systematic mapping of EPC applications combined with assessment of EPC data quality for Stockholm. Continuity of data collaborations and interactivity of new analytical tools were identified as important factors for better integration of urban analytics into decision-making on energy transitions in cities.
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