Natural ventilation potential in Kuala Lumpur : assumptions, realities and future

Mohd Sahabuddin, Mohd Firrdhaus Bin and Gonzalez-Longo, Cristina; (2017) Natural ventilation potential in Kuala Lumpur : assumptions, realities and future. In: PLEA 2017. PLEA, GBR.

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Malaysia accounts for 11% of Southeast Asia’s carbon emissions in recent years, is the third highest emissions contributor in the region. It has been estimated that 25% of these carbon emissions are generated from the buildings, especially from the electrical and mechanical equipment that are present in residential buildings. Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur, has 81.5% of the high-rise buildings in the country and half of the buildings are residential. They have supposedly been designed as predominantly naturally ventilated, but the occupants had to add inefficient mechanical ventilation to achieve the required cooling. It is due to the lack of acknowledgement of the hot, humid climate of Malaysia by the current building regulations and the fact that the requirements for energy use are not customised for residential buildings. Recent developments concerning the use of green rating tools are helping to improve the sustainable design of buildings. This paper reviews these existing regulations and green rating tools and explores the full potential for natural ventilation in Kuala Lumpur, to substantially reduce carbon emissions while considering both the health and comfort of the occupants. It concludes that the building regulations should be revised to deal with current and future climatic conditions and to achieve the critical conditions that allow for natural ventilation in Kuala Lumpur.