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It takes energy to heat & cool buildings. The worse the insulation, the more energy it takes. There are plenty of ways to improve the insulation. But that also takes energy - as well as labor and materials.
We need to compare the environmental impact of doing the work vs doing nothing. In which cases is it better to renovate, and in which cases is it better to just let it be?
Compare various retrofit scenarios, such as
- Replacing old windows with new ones
- Tearing down walls to replace 50-year-old insulation
Scenarios can be very specific, such as type of window, the type of wall, etc.
For each scenario, compare the expected amounts of:
- Energy saved per year
- Lifespan of the retrofit
- Labor hours invested in the retrofit
- Materials needed for the retrofit
- Energy needed to produce such materials