Streamlining the adoption of sustainable building practices

Shatakshi Suman | GBPN

Shatakshi Suman, Senior Research Associate at Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy (AEEE) has big ambitions.

Within the next decade, she anticipates the work her team is doing will see all new housing developments across India be built using the Eco Niwas Samhita 2021 building code, which will reduce their carbon footprint and help stop climate change.

This will be made possible using the ENS Platform – an online portal Ms Suman’s team at AEEE have created; a one-stop-shop for how to be ENS compliant at every stage of a residential development.

“We wanted the tool we were creating to be driven by the same thought process behind the ENS – easy to understand, adopt, implement and apply.”

– Shatakshi Suman, Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy (AEEE)

Reducing admin and reducing emissions

Maaz Dixit, AEEE team member, said that currently, developers, architects and builders were required to source materials, guidelines and certifications themselves, making the administration load to be ENS compliant – or even environmentally sustainable – very high.

“In all of our research, prior to creating the platform,  the main feedback was that they wanted everything in one place to be compliant,” Ms Dixit said.

The result of that research and almost eight months of hard work is the ENS Platform (currently in BETA),  an informative, user-friendly, step-by-step certification that can be accessed by professionals within the industry, online at any time, to guide them through the process.

“This is a one-of-a-kind portal, nowhere else in India is doing anything like this,” said Ms Dixit.

The ENS platform has four components; 

  • a business directory of consultants, suppliers, manufacturers and materials that are ENS compliant or can assist with compliance, 
  • a tutorial on how to navigate the ENS platform including government resources, 
  • a user-specific step-by-step process for implementation, whether you’re an architect, developer or builder, and 
  • a final certification process, all in one place.

Keeping it simple

The solution to streamlining ENS implementation, according to Ms Suman and the AEEE team, was to make the process of implementation as straightforward as the code itself.

“We wanted the tool we created to be driven by the same thought process behind the ENS so it would be easy to use and navigate and would bring all that was required to make an ENS-compliant building under the same roof,” she said.

“What we have created is an online tool that brings all the different initiatives that have been going on in different nooks and corners to a single platform to facilitate adoption. We hope this will give confidence to an administrator at the state level to adopt the code and we look forward to seeing it integrated and adopted on a larger scale. 

“We are currently discussing the platform with the state of Gujarat and other states so we can scale it up elsewhere.”

The potential positive environmental impact from correct implementation of the ENS, facilitated by the ENS Platform is significant, says GBPN’s Senior Advisor, India, Mr Gautam Nagar.

“If ENS (Part 1) is implemented effectively, it offers an energy-saving potential of 125 billion units of electricity per year by 2030 (the baseline year 2018).” 

“This is equivalent to [preventing] about 100 million tons of CO2 emission,” Mr Nagar said.