DGNB and cove.tool

What is DGNB? Pursuing DGNB Certification

Patrick Chopson avatar
Written by Patrick Chopson
Updated over a week ago

What is the DGNB?

DGNB (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen), meaning "German Sustainable Building Council", is a Stuttgart-based non-profit organization committed to increased development of demonstrably good buildings and urban districts. The core principles of the DGNB revolve around a holistic understanding of the interconnectedness of sustainability, the economic and socio-cultural factors of the end-users, and the built environment. To spread its impact, the DGNB has developed its own certification system starting in 2009. As of today, the DGNB system is internationally recognized as the Global Benchmark for Sustainability and the most advanced certification system in the world. More than 8,700 construction projects have already been planned, built, and certified according to the principles of the DGNB in more than 35 countries worldwide (as of 31.12.2021).

The DGNB System

The certification system is tailored to best evaluate the planning, construction, and operations of various building types, districts, and interior projects. In terms of its evaluation approach, the DGNB System has three key criteria:

  • Life cycle assessment

  • Holistic Alignment

  • Continued High-Quality Performance

In contrast to other certification standards which may isolate measures of impact, the DGNB certification process consistently takes into account the entire life cycle of a project. As a planning and optimization tool, it helps all those involved in each phase from planning to deconstruction.

DGNB Certification

The certification process is done by the auditor. The auditor supports the contractor and supervises the process from initial registration up to the conclusion and certification. A DGNB certification can be earned for new and existing buildings, renovation, and buildings in use. New and existing buildings may obtain a DGNB platinum, gold, or silver certification based on the total performance index met. A bronze certificate may be obtained for sustainable building operations or existing buildings that were initially built without planning for a DGNB certification. More on the certification process here.

The DGNB criteria are weighted differently depending on the type and scope of the project. The aim is to always promote the uniform design and delivery of high-quality buildings, districts, and interiors. Learn more about the benefits of DGNB certification here.

How can cove.tool help?

At the moment, cove.tool can be used to pursue the following criteria:

  1. New Construction

    1. Potable water demand and waste water volume (ENV2.2), use water tool to calculate water use and potential portable water use reduction.

    2. Flexibility and adaptability (ECO2.1), use the drawing.tool to iteratively model various massing options to identify the most flexible use of land and iterate layout for space efficiency. Then use analysis.tool to record metrics of performance to help determine the feasibility of mixed-use design, deeper massing, and vertical stacking for an innovative approach.

    3. Visual comfort (SOC1.4), use the Views Study in the 3D analysis tool to measure Visual contact with the outside.

    4. User control (SOC1.5), use the baseline energy page to explore the energy impacts of implementing more occupant-driven controls, such as blinds/shades/curtains, daylight and occupancy sensors, local thermostat-controlled systems, and ventilation controls.

    5. Quality of the building envelope (TEC1.3), use the baseline energy page and optimization tool to compare multiple assembly options and see their impact on energy consumption.

    6. Use and integration of building technology (TEC1.4), use the climate report to pinpoint key passive strategies that can reduce reliance on active systems. Then use various features from the analysis.tool to explore daylight, radiation, and self-shading on the geometry.

  2. Renovated Building/ Existing Buildings

    1. TBD

  3. Buildings in Use

    1. TBD

Happy Modeling!

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