Jesse Clarke, M.AIRAH
Pro Clima

The RollerCODEster

As we move to more highly insulated buildings it is important to understand the opposite and equal reaction (Newton’s third law). The residential energy efficiency standards are moving forward. This is great, but the options to achieve higher energy ratings need to be carefully considered, because the combinations of vapour permeable and vapour impermeable insulation types can lead to unintended consequences. Condensation, moisture accumulation, corrosion and timber rot in the building envelope are such examples. Numerous factors go into mitigating this risk and need to be considered at a regulatory level. The basic premise is, building envelope assemblies should be as vapour permeable as possible and only as vapour resistive as necessary. Australia has a long history of using reflective vapour barriers to achieve cheap R-values in construction systems. Has our energy-efficiency trajectory started at the wrong end of the permeability spectrum? Is the foil tail wagging the BCC dog?

This presentation will take a holistic national snapshot of where the risk lies and what factors can be used to mitigate these risks in residential facade design. Ensuring building permanence through envelope permeance, mandatory cavities to remove moisture, incorporation of vapour control layers, limiting indoor humidity through mechanical systems, and very importantly mandating measurement of air infiltration. If we don't measure it we will never be able to manage it. 

First and foremost the building code MUST protect the health and safety of the people residing in the buildings of Australia. Then we can crank the energy efficiency to our hearts’ desire. 


About Clarke:
Currently working in a technical lead role for Pro Clima servicing Australia and New Zealand, Clarke is a building scientist and engineer with more than 15 years’ experience in the construction industry. He chairs AIRAH's Building Physics Special Technical Group, advocating for a holistic approach to the development of industry guidance, standards, and codes. 

He works closely with the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) and Standards Australia, with the aim to realise the internationally proven benefit of integrated mechanical system and envelope design to deliver world-class energy-efficient and healthy Australian buildings with all the associated positive outcomes for designers, builders, and inhabitants.