Impact of climate change on ventilation load and energy use of air conditioning systems in buildings of Hong Kong

Ronghui Qi, Lin Lu, Hongxing Yang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Climate change may seriously affect the energy consumption of buildings by influencing their air conditioning loads, especially the ventilation loads which vary directly with the local weather conditions. Research on how the ventilation load responds to climate change is of great significance, especially in coastline subtropical regions like Hong Kong. This paper investigated the impacts of climate change on buildings' ventilation load and building energy use in Hong Kong with the hourly meteorological data from 1950 to 2007. Results have been well validated by the simulation of a typical local hotel building during this period. The results show that climate warming increases both sensible and latent parts of the cooling ventilation load. The latent part, which occupies ~80% of the total ventilation load, increases at a higher rate, about twice of that of the sensible one. Furthermore, it is found that the urban heat island (UHI) effect causes a much higher growth rate of the ventilation load at night, which is about three times compared with that in the daytime. The latent part of the cooling ventilation load at night, which is found to be the most sensitive component to the climate change, plays a most significant role in the energy consumption increase. The possible measures were thus suggested to avoid negative changes of the ventilation load. Besides, reducing the UHI effect by better urban planning also significantly benefits the local buildings with a long air-conditioning operation time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-309
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Low-Carbon Technologies
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012


  • Climate warming
  • Latent load
  • Sensible load
  • Urban heat island effect
  • Ventilation load

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • General Environmental Science


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