UCL Energy Institute


Report on introducing Building Renovation Passports in the UK welcomed

17 March 2021

UCL Energy Institute’s Professor Paul Ruyssevelt welcomes the publication of the Building Renovation Passports report, identifying opportunities where existing data models hold information key to the creation of such passports in the UK.

A colourful terrace of houses

The Green Finance Institute’s Coalition for the Energy Efficiency of Buildings has released Building Renovation Passports: Creating the pathway to zero carbon homes, a report setting out the steps to establish a digital tool to help property owners access decision-useful information to retrofit their homes. 


Already in use in several European countries, Building Renovation Passports (BRP) contain a digital logbook with information about the property, its operational performance and historic renovations; and a long-term renovation roadmap that identifies future retrofit measures, along with links to contractors and finance options. They can play an important role in mapping the road to decarbonise the UK’s built environment, enabling the financial innovation needed to fund the scale of retrofits required, and guiding the UK in the race to zero emissions.


Professor Paul Ruyssevelt of UCL Energy Institute has welcomed the report, whilst identifying opportunities where key data already exists in comprehensive building stock models created by UCL Energy Institute.


Professor Ruyssevelt said:


“I am very pleased to see the publication of the publication of Building Renovation Passports: Creating the pathway to zero carbon homes produced by the Green Finance Institute’s Coalition for the Energy Efficiency of Buildings (CEEB) with input from UCL.


Building passports have been discussed for at least two decades, and probably more. They were identified by the Existing Homes Alliance in the early 2000s as a vital tool to delivering the individually tailored retrofits necessary to achieve significant cuts to carbon emissions in existing homes. Other European countries already have similar documents and this policy could be implemented quickly and cheaply, stimulating the market for retrofits to the benefit of the UK economy. This new report sets out in very clear and concise terms the core components of a BRP, the roles and responsibilities of the key stakeholders, and opportunities and levers that are open to them. The report correctly recognises the critical role of data and proposes that a start should be made through an “Integration of disparate existing data sources, collecting and storing data in a standardised format, with a data integration method to draw information together.” It highlights important factors such as the need to “Capture differences between individual and multi-household buildings” and the very pressing need to “Address the gap between predicted and operational performance..”.


It is therefore important to note that a lot of the heavy lifting for these challenges has already been done through the development of the comprehensive digital representation of the domestic and non-domestic building in UCL’s 3DStock platform. 3DStock represents every building in the stock in full 3D geometry with the space use type allocated floor-by-floor and many other energy and contextual characteristics attributed to each building. The platform has been under development for nearly a decade and last year the GLA launched a publicly available version in the form of the London Building Stock Model (LBSM).  UCL is currently working with the London Boroughs of Sutton and Islington, using 3DStock to help them develop strategy and action plans for delivering net zero carbon for their social housing stocks. Using 3DStock as a base UCL has also produced the London Solar Opportunity Map (LSOM) for the GLA to help identify suitable sites for solar PV and solar thermal systems in support of the Mayor’s target of 2GWp solar installed by 2050. We are currently working on a development under the GLA ‘Be Seen’ policy which will result in major new developments having to submit predictions of their energy use and carbon emissions pre and post construction.  These will be mapped onto the LBSM and available for public scrutiny.


The framework on which to hang much of the proposed Building Renovation Passports already exists in 3DStock and the UCL Building Stock Lab is currently working with partners to develop this beyond London into a national platform.”


For further information on 3DStock and how it might link to work in the development of BRPs contact

Paul Ruysssevelt  (p.ruyssevelt@ucl.ac.uk).