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Energy Conservation Building Code(ECBC)

Energy Conservation Building Code(ECBC)

Buildings account for 35% of total final energy consumption in India today, and building energy use is growing at 8% annually.

Studies have shown that carbon policies will have little effect on reducing building energy demand.

The growing energy demand in buildings is accompanied by a transition from traditional biomass to commercial fuels, particularly an increase in electricity use. This also leads to a rapid increase in carbon emissions and aggravates power shortages in India. Growth in building energy use poses a challenge for the Indian government.

Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC)

The Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) has been developed by the International Institute for Energy Conservation (IIEC) under contract with United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as per the Energy Conservation and Commercialization (ECO) project providing support to Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) Action plan

To curb energy consumption in buildings, the Indian government issued the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) in 2007, which applies to commercial buildings with a connected load of 100 kW or 120kVA.

Studies estimated that the implementation of ECBC could help save 25-40% of energy, compared to reference buildings without such energy efficiency measures.

Guidelines proposed by TERI

  • Installing solar passive integration in new buildings.
  • Solar water heating systems for residential and commercial buildings.
  • Energy efficient artificial lighting design.
  • Energy efficient air conditioning design for buildings.
  • Use of BEE-labelled equipment and appliances to achieve energy efficiency in new and existing buildings.
  • Provision of roof treatment to cut heat gain.
  • Window design for day lighting, ventilation, and to reduce solar heat gain.
  • Energy efficient electrical system for buildings.


Courtesy : The Hindu

There are several barriers that slows the process down

  • Although the development of ECBC lies in the hands of the national government – the Bureau of Energy Efficiency under the Ministry of Power, the adoption and implementation of ECBC largely relies on state and local governments.
  • Stakeholders, such as architects, developers, and state and local governments, lack awareness of building energy efficiency, and do not have enough capacity and resources to implement ECBC.
  • Most jurisdictions have not yet established effective legal mechanisms for implementing ECBC; specifically, ECBC is not included in local building by-laws in most jurisdictions or incorporated into the building permitting process.
  • There is not a systematic approach to measuring and verifying compliance and energy savings, and thus the market does not have enough confidence in ECBC.
  • Six years after ECBC’s enactment, only two states and one territory out of 35 Indian states and union territories formally adopted ECBC and six additional states are in the legislative process of approving.

Need for compliance mechanism

As India just started its energy code implementation, conducting compliance evaluation can help Indian policy makers to identify potential problems in ECBC implementation and make improvements accordingly.

The U.S. and China aim to develop comprehensive methods for compliance evaluation, based on some key components that are essential to evaluating code compliance:-

  • A statistical approach to evaluating and estimating compliance rates.
  • Detailed compliance checklists for evaluators and code officials to measure and decide on whether the building complies with codes.
  • Priorities in compliance evaluation.
  • A consistent methodology
  • Robust compliance software


The successful implementation of the Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) requires development of compliance procedures. elaborate.

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