How the glass industry is addressing energy efficiency

Glass for Europe, the trade association for European flat glass manufacturers has produced a series of great publications spelling out the ways that glass production is embracing energy efficiency, and the ways that glass as a product is contributing to sustainability in buildings, automotive and the solar industry.

Glass in buildings

The booklet on ‘smart use of glass in sustainable buildings‘ contains beautiful photos and case studies demonstrating how the new generation of high quality glass is being used in low energy buildings to achieve energy performance standards. Constant technological advances mean that new glass products are constantly available to ambitious architects and building engineers, products such as double and triple glazed units with inert gas fillings and invisible low emissivity coatings. And the way that glass is being used has changed: glass is now used as part of an organic approach to the lighting, heating and cooling of buildings.

LuxembourgExcellent examples in the booklet include the Imprenta Regional Murcia in Spain – an office building that uses glass pergola combined with photovoltaic cells to generate 60% of the electricity used on-site, also the European Investment Bank in Luxembourg – featuring an 11,000m2 double layer glass facade which acts as a shell to the whole building, allowing natural light in every office and thermal insulation to keep energy consumption super low.

Policy for glass; policy for sustainability

Summarising useful statistics and research into the glass industry, the ‘Glass for Europe’s Industrial Renaissance‘ booklet outlines the changes that should be made at a policy level in order to maintain innovation in the glass industry. There are three key recommendations: promote sustainability in the construction industry, support the deployment of energy efficient windows and glass innovation, and taking steps to retain processes and jobs in Europe. The booklet goes on to give more detail and background which provide a really thorough understanding of the market.