Finnish company warning

BIG 5: Energy wastage warning from Elematic, precast concrete machinery production specialists.

Lassi Jarvinen says that saving energy is the biggest challenge facing the construction industry.
Lassi Jarvinen says that saving energy is the biggest challenge facing the construction industry.

Poor insulation of buildings in the Middle East is to blame for a huge amount of energy being wasted, an exhibitor at the Big 5 has claimed.

Lassi Jarvinen, technical director, Elematic said that many buildings use more energy for air conditioning than would be needed to heat similar-sized ones in the icy climates of Scandinavia.

Elematic is a Finnish company, which has an office in Dubai and specialises in precast concrete machinery production.

Jarvinen said the advantage of precast was that it helped reduce the amount of concrete and steel needed for buildings by about 10%.

However, as only 10% of the energy consumption of a building's lifecycle takes place during the construction phase, precast had other advantages.

"Saving energy is the most important challenge facing everyone in the construction industry at the moment," said Jarvinen.

"But here in the Middle East we are using more energy for cooling houses than we do in Finland to heat our homes.

"Previously, because energy was so cheap, people here were not that concerned about energy costs.

"But Dubai only has about ten years of oil left, so it has to take the issue of saving energy through insulation very seriously."

Jarvinen added that Elematic's precast material was extremely well insulated and would provide huge savings to the occupiers of buildings.

"Because Finland is so cold, we are experts in insulation of buildings," he added.

"Exactly the same technology is used to keep a building hot as to keep it cold, so we are very much in demand here.

"Precasting is not only a much faster way to construct a building; it is also a lot more efficient."

Elematic's products have been used for many buildings in the UAE, including those in the Dubai Marina.

Raimo Juhantalo, area sales director for the UAE, Elematic, said: "According to regulations in the UAE, all new buildings must be insulated and an estimate on the insulation capacity of walls must be presented.

"In practice, the insulation thickness is 50mm minimum."

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