Solar thermal panels can convert the sun’s energy into heat, but their heating capacity is lower than that of conventional heating systems. This means they need to be combined with good insulation and floor heating systems to increase their power. Solar thermal panels can be mounted on buildings on the roof, the block’s facade or as „curtains” which can be pulled out or put away depending on the light intensity. „Solar panels not only produce green energy, but they can also replace the roof or the facade of a building,” says Lavinia Pavel, executive director at Romanian solar panel provider Solariss.
This has a sliding scale of green qualities which start at green insulation and solar panelling, then take into account sewage and water, such as how much ground water in the area sees depletion. The social, infrastructural, political and economic environment are assessed. This includes what effect the building has on the local job market and how it supports local industry. Finally Oxford Management analyses the effect on the global environment, such as pollution.
The previous Government had initiated a programme called ‘The Green House’ [Casa Verde] where Romanians who invested in energy saving systems that used geothermal, solar or wind energy were granted financial support from the Ministry of the Environment’s ‘Environment Fund’. Individuals received 90 per cent of the total cost of the system, which was up to 5,860 Euro, while companies were granted up to 58,630 Euro. However the new Government had shut down this programme as we went to press, in a cost-cutting measure.
Heat pumps transfer heat by circulating a refrigerent through a cycle of evaporation and condensation – like a household refrigerator. A heat pump absorbs heat from the outdoor air in the winter and rejects heat from outside in the summer.