How Passive Design Create Sustainable Commercial Buildings?

We often don’t realize it, but building construction plans are crucial to environmental health. The traditional ways in which buildings are constructs increase the energy consumption due to loss of heat, poor insulation, blockage in the path or natural sunlight, and more. As a result, you’ll need to be more dependent on has to use artificial sources of energy, lamps and bulbs, air conditioners, heaters, and more. This further puts pressure on energy consumption and increases greenhouse gas release and global warming. Due to these environmental issues, the Australian government introduced the National Construction Code (NCC) and implemented the Section J module. According to this module, building construction plans need to be at par with the pre-determined national energy consumption limits to reduce the effects on the environment. 

What Is JV3 Modelling?

Two methods can be utilized to make your plans compliant with the BCA Section J. The two methods are the DTS method and JV3 modelling. The Verification via the Energy Modeling concept offers greater flexibility. Verification through Energy Modeling or JV3 is achieved via a computerized mapping of the architecture plan and calculation of energy consumption. The annual energy expenditure is compare with a DTS compliant building. If the energy consumption values are less than the DTS buildings, your plan is considered compliant, and you can proceed with the project. If not, modifications need to be do to develop the design in the best possible way per BCA Section J’s provisions.

Introduction to Passive Buildings 

Passive buildings and construction mean the development will need minimal energy consumption to achieve a comfortable interior temperature throughout the year. This includes all components of artificial heating and cooling. JV3 modelling, therefore, considers all these energy factors while Additionally, the Passive House construction standard is specifically crafted to protect the real-estate structure for long-term occupancy without requiring renovation and reconstruction. When developing a plan for passive construction designs, several features are considered to ensure compliance with the required energy standards. These features are: 

  1. Insulation and heat transfer
  2. Glazing 
  3. Shades and roof constructions
  4. Climate-based designs
  5. Ventilation 

Features of the passive buildings 

Insulation and heat transfer

Natural insulation will help the commercial buildings trap in the heat during the winter season and prevent energy exchange with nature. This further reduces the use of heaters or fireplaces, thereby ensuring that the release of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses can be control. When it comes to the summer season, the insulation or thermal barrier will prevent the outside heat from increasing the internal temperatures. Therefore, dependency on air conditioners and coolers can be reduce, which are significant sources of greenhouse gasses. 


Based on the climate and the orientation of the building, the windows are glaze so that the exchange of thermal energy can be control. The environmental weather conditions will influence both the gain and loss of heat energy. This is both an eco-friendly and cost-effective solution for meeting the compliance requirements of BCA Section J provisions. 

Shades and roof constructions

With proper shade installations in the roof designs, you can ensure that the shading is maximize while the solar radiations are blocks during the summertime. This will improve the natural ambience and ensure that you don’t have to rely on appliances to control the temperature. The installation of the shade and the choice of the locations will depend entirely on the climatic zones and the property’s orientation. 

Climate-based designs

In Australia, there are a total of eight different climate zones. These are: 

  1. : humid and hot summer and warm winter 
  2. : Warm summer with humidity and mild winters
  3. : Dry and hot summer with a warm winter
  4. : Hot and dry summer season with cool winter
  5. : Warm temperate area
  6. : Mild temperate
  7. : Cool temperate
  8. : Alpine 

Based on these different climatic zones, the passive home designs are constructs to suit the orientation with the sunlight direction, wind flow, etc. This ensures that the construction plan can be developed to meet the annual energy consumption through JV3 modellingWant to understand more about the relationship between the climate zones and the construction plan? Reach out to a professional businesses consultant for expert solutions. 


Ventilation is crucial for the buildings as it allows the proper air circulation in the interiors. To achieve optimal ventilation, windows and doors are constructed so that air flowing into the rooms and outside won’t get blocked. However, if there are leaks in the construction plan, energy will be lost or gained without any reason. This will further increase the usage of appliances like air conditioners, heaters, and more. Additionally, it might not be a healthy environment for the occupants. JV3 modelling allows flexible design options to introduce ventilation in almost every commercial building design. 

How can the passive design of the commercial buildings help meet Section J BCA’s compliances?

To meet the provisions of Section J, passive designs of commercial buildings will have an immense contribution. 

Passive design ensures the following:

  • Increased uses of natural energy sources such as solar energy.
  • Reduce heat loss and heat gain
  • Reduced dependency on artificial energy-consuming appliances such as artificial lighting, air-conditioner, heater, etc. 

All these benefits collectively work together to improve the energy efficiency of a building, ultimately helping to achieve BCA Section J compliance.  


Developing the construction plans align with the Section J requirements and preparing the JV3 model can be complicate. Especially when a minor mistake down the line can prove costly and significantly delay your project. Therefore, it is recommended that you connect with a professional consultancy who can tell you the modelling process as per energy consumption standards. 

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