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Intelligent technologies for facilitating the green and digital transition of buildings in Cyprus

GoGreen project

According to European Commission, buildings are responsible for approximately 40% of energy consumption and 36% of greenhouse gas emissions, which mainly result from construction, usage (through lighting, heating, and cooling systems, domestic appliances), renovation and demolition. Improving energy efficiency in buildings through deploying digital technologies is critically important for achieving the EU’s ambitious goal of climate-neutrality by 2050, with benefits for the environment (reduction of greenhouse gas emissions) and citizens (lower energy bills, better air quality and improved health).

The KIOS Research and Innovation Center of Excellence, in collaboration with the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and the Cyprus Energy Agency (CEA), for the purposes of the Go Green* project, have investigated the impact of integrating sustainable and digital technologies in buildings. Within this context, KIOS researchers have developed and applied innovative digital technologies in two buildings (the CCCI and CEA buildings), evaluating their overall impact in terms of energy efficiency, occupants’ comfort level, and intelligent functionalities, thus facilitating their green and digital transformation.

Building Assessment Tool for Strategic Decision-Making
The first step towards this goal was the design and development of a holistic evaluation tool for assessing the buildings’ smart, green, comfort, and energy-efficient levels, through a total assessment score.

The developed assessment tool was first used for evaluating the initial configuration of both the CCCI and CEA buildings and for identifying a set of potential cost-effective action plans to achieve an optimized transition strategy for each building. Following the results of this analysis and considering the total assessment scores, CCCI and CEA personnel proceeded to upgrade their buildings’ green and digital readiness, considering the action plan determined by the KIOS team. As a result, the building assessment scores improved from 27% to 72% and from 28% to 59% for the CCCI and CEA buildings respectively, taking into account various actions and different budget and technical limitations for each case.

IoT Platform for Integrating Different Technologies in Building Environment
In addition to the holistic evaluation tool, the KIOS team developed an Internet of Things (IoT) platform which was integrated in both CCCI and CEA buildings, facilitating the seamless integration of various sustainable and digital technologies installed within the two buildings.

This platform offers advanced features empowering occupants to monitor and control crucial aspects such as energy consumption and air quality. By leveraging real-time data collected from sensors and equipment installed throughout the buildings, occupants can make informed decisions to optimize energy usage and maintain a healthy indoor environment.

These intelligent technologies, developed by the KIOS CoE, contribute towards the green and digital transformation of buildings, achieving energy efficiency, and fostering better indoor environmental conditions for occupants. They can also be integrated in larger-scale buildings with higher occupancy rates, such as hospitals or schools, where energy consumption is notably elevated and occupant comfort is paramount for both performance as well as health and safety.

* The EU “Go Green” project aims to promote the adoption of an integrated approach and framework for the creation of combined green and digital transformation initiatives at national and transnational level. On behalf of Cyprus, CCCI and CEA participated as partners, whereas KIOS CoE participated as an external expert to support the two authorities.