BCA Section J JV3

Alternative Verification Method

Alternative verification method JV3 or verification using a reference building is one of the two venues to meet the energy efficiency requirements of the BCA Section J. In this approach the proposed non residential development is compared with a reference building by modeling with building energy analysis computer software and a whole building indicator of energy efficiency performance is achieved. This approach is more time consuming and expensive compared to BCA Section J DTS method but the results are much more educated and project specific.


BCA Section J JV3 Method Uses

There are several reasons that a BCA Section J Alternative Solution might be proposed instead of a simple Deemed to Satisfy solution. Deemed to Satisfy provisions are simple provisions which do not take into account each project's specific requirements and particular and innovative approaches and, in many situations, prevent architects and building designers from achieving their intended design both aesthetically and technically. The major shortcoming associated with this approach is due to the fact that each element of the building is assessed versus fixed performance figures in total isolation from other building elements and the overall building's energy efficiency performance as a whole is not considered.

When a BCA Section J Alternative Solution is proposed the designer have many options to trade off between various energy efficiency provisions and building elements to alleviate the requirements of a preferred design area by substituting its performance with other design elements which can contribute to the overall energy efficiency of the building. BCA Section J Alternative Verification Method JV3 or Verification Using a Reference Building permits the use of building energy simulation software to estimate the energy consumption of a building design when following standard procedures and processes outlined in the BCA Section J part JV3. This is the only method to use if a development needs to incorporate the use of renewable, on site energy production facilities like solar, wind or geothermal energy generators to satisfy the performance requirements of the BCA Section J as being introduced in the BCA 2010 version for the first time.

BCA Section J JV3 Alternative Verification Method Assessment Process

The process of performing a BCA Section J Alternative Solution JV3 using building energy modeling software is described very briefly below:

  1. An appropriate building energy analysis software must be selected for the BCA Section J Alternative Solution JV3 using a Reference Building method. The governing regulation in choice of this software is ABCB Protocol for Building Energy Analysis Software Version 2006.1. This protocol only permits the use of computer energy modeling softwares which has passed the ASHRAE Standard 140-2001 "Standard Method of Test for the Evaluation of Building Energy Analysis Computer Programs" using the International Energy Agency BESTEST method. The results of this test must be within the range of results produced by acceptable comparable programs indicated in the standard.
  2. A Reference Building computer model is generated using the approved energy simulation software according to the provisions and guidelines of the following documents:
    • BCA Section J Part JV3 Verification Using a Reference Building.
    • BCA Section J Specification JV Annual Energy Consumption Criteria.
    • ABCB Protocol for Building Energy Analysis Software Version 2006.1.
    • BCA Section J Assessment and Verification of an Alternative Solution Handbook 2010.
  3. Two other separate building models must be generated following the guidelines of the same set of documents addressed in the Reference Building modeling above for the Proposed Development as follow:
    • The proposed building as modeled with the proposed design services.
    • The proposed building as modeled with the same services used in modeling of the Reference Building.
  4. Theoretical annual energy consumption of the three computer building models are then being calculated by using approved building energy analysis software at step 1. The results of the simulation for the Reference Building sets a quantified benchmark for the evaluation of the proposed building design. The results of the two other analysis on the models developed for the Proposed Development are then generated with the similar criteria as specified in BCA Section J part JV3.
  5. In order for a building to satisfy the requirements of the BCA Section J Alternative Solution JV3, energy consumption of the two proposed building modeling runs must be less than that of the Reference Building. The results are then introduced to the consent authority in a standard BCA Section J Report format for Alternative Solution to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of the BCA Section J.