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Introduction to the Eco-Community Evaluation System and Pre-Evaluation Case Studies

  In response to global warming and climate change, and accelerating urban heat island effect in Taiwan, the Executive Yuan ratified and implemented the “Eco-City and Green Building Promotion Program” in 2008 for continually promoting green building and extending its promotion into a lager-scale eco-community and eco-city development. The program proposed relevant research plans and implementation tasks of eco-city and eco-community for gradually attaining the national of goal of sustainable development. According to the policy guidelines, the ABRI devised an eco-community evaluation system and certification mechanism, and published the “Manual for Eco-Community Evaluation System” in 2010 including several pilot projects for further promotion and implementation.

01. Eco-Community Evaluation System (EEWH-EC)

The eco-community evaluation system (EEWH-EC) consists of five evaluation categories: ecology, energy saving and waste reduction, health and amenity, service functions, and public safety, described as follows:

  1. Ecology: Biodiversity, greenery (vegetation planting), and water circulation.
  2. Energy saving and waste reduction: Acquisition of ISO 14000, energy-efficient buildings, green transportation, waste reduction, energy saving for community lighting, innovative energy saving measures, renewable energy, resource recycling practices, and carbon-neutral measures.
  3. Health and amenity: UHI mitigation, friendly pedestrian spaces, and pollution prevention.
  4. Service functions: Cultural and educational facilities, sport and recreational facilities, convenience facilities, social welfare, and community consciousness.
  5. Public safety: Space characteristics, crime prevention facilities, and neighborhood watch groups.
  The EEWH-EC system covering five major categories comprises of 22 evaluation indicators and 71 detailed items with individual calculation methods for each item, listed in the following table.

Eco-Community Assessment System Assessment Form
Category Indicator Evaluation Items
Ecology Biodiversity Ecological network
Biological habitats
Plant diversity
Soil ecosystem
Light pollution
Obstacles to animal moving
Greenery (vegetation planting) CO₂ absorption
Water circulation Water content
Community rainwater and grey water system
Energy saving
Waste reduction
Acquisition of ISO14000(a whole block for commercial buildings)
Energy-efficient buildings Electricity consumption for a block
Number of green buildings
Green transportation transit
Community buses or carpooling system
Bicycle paths
Bicycle racks
Waste reduction Light building structure
3R materials, ecological materials
Historical building protection, restoration, and reuse
Construction pollution for newly-developed community
Community lighting Avoid over-designed street lights
Innovative energy saving measures Proof documentation
Renewable energy Percentage of renewable energy use
Resource recycling practices Proof documentation
Carbon-neutral measures Afforestation, habitat restoration, green power
UHI mitigation Outdoor thermal environment and ventilation
Outdoor shading
surface evapotranspiration
Radiant heat from artificial surfaces
Friendly pedestrian spaces Overpass and underground passageway
Leveling pedestrian paths
Handrail for slopes/stairways
Outdoor rest areas and benches
Pedestrian paths
Pollution prevention Bypass
Noise source
Traffic vibration
Livestock pollution
River pollution
Drinking water pollution
Sewer pollution
Air pollution
Soil pollution
Service functions Cultural an educational facilities Public elementary school
Community center
Sport and recreational facilities Neighborhood park
Green spaces/greenbelts
Activity spaces for elders
Other activity spaces
Convenience facilities shopping
Social welfare Elder care
Community nursery center
Category Indicator Evaluation Items
Community consciousness Historical building protection and restoration
Natural landscape
Community industry
Community participation
Public safety Space characteristics Residential types
Possible climbing holds
Street safety characteristics
Surrounding area safety
Crime prevention and neighborhood watch groups Pubic monitoring system
Neighborhood management and watch groups
Surrounding entertainment places

02. Pre-evaluation

  The pre-evaluation aimed to provide as a paradigmatic example for in-depth simulating the EEWH-EC system and its feasibility. Two communities were selected, including a residential neighborhood (Minh-Shan community in Shih-Lin district, Taipei) and a non-residential community (Southern Science Park, Tainan). The preliminary evaluation results demonstrate that the Ming-Shan community is silver-rated (as Table 1) while the Southern Science Park is diamond-rated (as Table 2).

Table 1 Pre-evaluation Result for Ming-Shan community
Category Calculation and Scores
Indicators Design value Criteria Adjustments Scores
Ecology Biodiversity BD=58.48 BDc=45 R1=(BD-Dc)/BDc=0.3 E1=18.75×R1+2.0=7.63
Greenery TCO₂=128190595.7 TCO₂c=38925150 R2=(TCO₂-O₂c)/TCO₂c=2.7 E2=6.81×R2+2.0=17.66
Water Circulation Water Content λ=52.69 λc=0.44 R 3=(λ-λc)/λc=118.75  
Grey Water System Nil   communityR4= 1.0+0.1×(r×20.0) Non-communityR4=(commercial and industrial water reuse + residential water reuse)/actual water consumption=r
whereas R4≦0.5
System Scoring E=3.7×(E1+E2+E3)=3.7×(7.63+17.66+557.75)= 2157.25
The score is 100 as the maximum is 100.
  Original scores System scores
Energy saving and waste reduction EW’=23.78 EW=EW’÷ 0.7=23.78÷ 0.7=33.97
Health and amenity H’=51.52 H = H’÷ 0.8=51.52÷ 0.8=64.40
Service functions S’= 92.392 S = S’ ÷0.8= 92.392÷0.8=115.49 the score is 100 as the maximum is 100
Public safety C’= 58.7758 C = C’ ÷0.4= 58.7758÷0.4=146. the score is 100 as the maximum is 100
Total Scores 100 + 33.97 + 64.40 + 100 + 100= 398.37
Rating Type A community
350 ≦ EC ≦ 400

(Table 2) Pre-evaluation Result for the Southern Science Park in Tainan
Category Calculation and Scores
Indicators Design value Criteria Adjustments Scores
Ecology Biodiversity BD=60.93 BDc=50 R1=(BD-BDc)/BDc=0.2185 E1=18.75×R1+2.0=6.0980
Greenery TCO₂=182839360 TCO₂c=1375575000 R2=(TCO₂-TCO₂c)/TCO₂c=0.6351 E2=6.81×R2+2.0=6.3254
Water circulation Water content λ=1.5150 λc=0.4 R3=(λ-λc)/λc=2.7875  
Grey Water system     Community R4= S/D = r =0.4297
Non-community R4= (commercial and industrial water reuse + residential water reuse)/total water consumption= r
whereas R4≦0.5
System scores E=3.7×(E1+E2+E3)=3.7×(6.098+6.3254+17.0570)= 109.078
The score is 100 as the maximum is 100.
  Original scores System scores
Energy saving and waste reduction EW’=61.01 EW=EW’÷ 0.7=61.01÷ 0.7=87.15
Health and amenity H’=70.28 H = H’÷ 0.8=(-5.15)÷ 0.8=87.84
Service functions Not applicable
Public safety Not applicable
Total scroes 100+87.15+87.84=274.99
Rating Science park
255 ≦ EC

2. The administrative procedure for an eco-community evaluation is quite different from that for green building certification. Therefore, the ABRI is currently reviewing relevant regulations for green building certification and devising proper operational directions and application documentations for further eco-community practices.

  The effect of the establishment of green building and eco-community evaluation systems has proved to be positive. A standardized evaluation system and governmental certification providing as an impartial and objective assessment basis is expected to widely enhance people’s awareness of green lifestyle so as to further achieve our future sustainable homeland.

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