BASF Netherlands facilitates more efficient and sustainable buildings

October 18, 2016

The Netherlands have set themselves a big goal – by the year 2050, the country’s entire housing stock should have undergone energy-efficiency renovations and as a result, all homes will be zero-energy buildings. This is a mammoth undertaking considering that around 53 per cent of all flats and houses in the Netherlands were built before 1976 and are either poorly insulated, or not insulated at all.

BASF employees Roel Gunnick (left) and Pieter van Gent are blazing new trails in the Dutch building industry with the Stromversnelling project.

At present, building use accounts for around 30 per cent of the Netherlands’ total energy consumption. That is why builders, suppliers and municipal representatives have joined forces to initiate an innovative housing renovation project. The so-called Stroomversnelling program’s aim is to make 111,000 Dutch rental flats energy-efficient over the next few years. And the program is already underway: four major Dutch construction companies and six housing associations signed the contract for the first 11,000 flats in 2013.

BASF has joined the network in 2015, and is working on a façade renovation development program. “Our project partners visited our Antwerp and Ludwigshafen sites and saw our building and insulation products and solutions for themselves. So, this convinced them that we could be a valuable contribution to the Stroomversnelling network,” says Pieter van Gent, Local Business Manager of the Construction Chemicals division of Master Builders Solutions at BASF, who initiated the company’s participation.

One of the project’s approaches is called ‘Nul op de Meter’ (English: zero meter reading). That means that the energy costs saved are used for financing the renovations. The housing costs therefore remain the same and residents have a better flat without paying any more money.

To achieve this, both more efficient industrial construction methods as well as better building materials are essential.

This can turn façades into “intelligent cladding”: everything from insulation materials to windows and even electronic systems have already been integrated into the finished façade. As they are produced entirely in the factory, no additional on-site work is required, and often they can be erected within half a day. The system is highly efficient and makes building, or renovating, houses much faster.

“Since BASF develops and supplies products for a wide range of industries, we can address numerous aspects of façade renovation,” says Roel Gunnink, Segment Marketing Manager for Performance Materials, BASF Netherlands. “Within Stroomversnelling, we´re not only supplying materials, but are also advising our partners on topics such as efficient and sustainable building processes.”

Find out more about Stroomversnelling in this video (in Dutch only)