Paper presented to the 3rd Southern African Solar Energy Conference, South Africa, 11-13 May, 2015.
Degree-days (DD) are a climatic indicator that can be used in the assessment and analysis of weather related to energy consumption of buildings. Essentially, degree-days are a summation of the differences between the outdoor temperature and some reference (or base) temperature over a specific time period. In literature, different method can be used for determining the DD value and generally the choice depends on the availability of climatic data of each location. In this paper, after a review and comparison of the most common approaches used to determine DD, the Italian procedure was deeply analyzed. The application of Italian technical rules is based on weather data calculated on a monthly time series monitored before 1994. The obsolescence of the used weather data leads to an incorrect assessment of energy performances. Taking into account the climatic change that in the last years has affected Italy land, the aim of the paper is to assess the impact of new DD values in calculating energy demand of buildings.
For these reasons, in this paper the authors recalculated DD of some Italian cities, considering the average monthly temperatures of the last decade. Data were extracted from Meteonorm 7, one of the most popular software for the statistical processing of climate data. Furthermore, other datasets were generated considering future scenarios defined by IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). A comparison with the official DD issued by current legislation and new DD recalculated with more recent data highlighted how climate change have affected the calculation of this parameter.