Food, housing and travel are the main contributors to the environmental burden placed on today’s society. For domestic households, these three factors together account for over 70 per cent of the overall climate impact, with the main effects coming from housing and travel.

The aim of the resource-wise housing project is to reduce the negative environmental effects and energy consumption of housing and accommodation, while encouraging residents to take up more sustainable lifestyles. The project is being run in Jyväskylä with the aim of making local households more resource-wise.

In practice, resource wisdom refers to reducing resource consumption and emissions while increasing people’s well-being. Housing companies are already implementing concrete energy-saving measures such as replacing lights, installing water-saving fittings and increasing insulation. Even small changes can have a large impact on emissions, resource use and, above all, cost management for housing companies. Resource wisdom brings savings, while potentially improving living conditions and increasing the value of property.

The purpose of the project is to develop an operating model for resource-wise housing, which could be copied and spread across Finland. The intention is to pilot solutions that save natural resources and reduce emissions – particularly in relation to energy consumption, water consumption and sharing of various resources – with housing companies in Jyväskylä.

The project aims for concrete and measurable changes stemming from actions such as replacing lights or installing water-saving fittings in apartments. The focus is on decision-making within housing companies, and how to ensure resource-wise choices are made. The operating model for resource-wise housing intends to include good decision-making practices; the pilot project will show what information and data are needed to support this.

The project seeks to answer the questions of how housing companies can improve their resource wisdom without huge investments, and how their boards can be convinced to make the necessary decisions.

Another concrete aim of the project is to start the preparatory work for creating a label or a set of criteria for labelling resource-wise housing companies. This would be comparable to the Green Office system for worksplaces or the Green Flag system for schools. The idea is to understand the ways in which a resource-wise housing company differs from an average one in relation to, for example, energy and water consumption, waste management, carbon dioxide emissions and cost savings, and why it would be worthwhile for housing companies to pursue similar aims.

The project is conducted by JAPA.

Read more

YLE, 3 March 2014 (in Finnish): Omenapuita pihalle ja vuotavat hanat kuriin – Jyväskylässä haetaan taloyhtiöitä ekotehokkuuspilottiin

JAPA, 31 March 2014: Resource-wise housing pilot buildings chosen in Jyväskylä (in Finnish)

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