The effect of climate change on performance resiliency of hotel buildings: A sensitivity study

  • Saba Sadati

Student thesis: Phd


There is a growing international awareness of the need to reduce the carbon emissions and to mitigate the effects of climate change. Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions are one of the major drivers of climate change causing detrimental environmental effects such as global warming, changes in weather patterns and extreme weather conditions. Due to the high probability of extreme weather events in near future, the resiliency of buildings to heat has gained further importance. Dynamic behaviour of buildings is the key area in the process of continual adaptation and the concept of resilience as a major driver against climate change. This work provides a comprehensive study of the impact of climate change on energy performance of a Mediterranean hotel building and identifies the most influential building parameters at design stage. The methodological framework combines future weather file generation, building energy modelling and global sensitivity analysis using two different methods. To include climate uncertainties and extreme events, large datasets of future climate are utilised for a 60-year time span (2020-2080) by considering RCP8.5 future climate scenario. Climate data for a designated Mediterranean location (Antalya, 36.8969 N, 30.7133 E), downscaled by the RCA4 Regional Climate Model (RCM), were pre-processed, and incorporated to be employed in simulating the energy performance of the hotel building. By focusing on a specific location within the Mediterranean region, this study highlights the vulnerability of this area to climate change impacts and emphasises the urgent need to prioritise building resilience. The results show that the cooling load for buildings is projected to rise by 42% and heating load to decrease by 36% in the long-term extra warm future (2060-2079) compared to current conditions. Similarly, the energy use intensity (EUI) of the building would experience an increase of 10.5%. Results for mid-term (2040-2059) and short-term (2020-2039) future depicted a similar trend based on severity of climate change impacts. As a result, climate-induced extreme events have the potential to significantly impact future energy demands, in addition to the long-term gradual changes. Moreover, two sensitivity analysis methods were used for this study, the Morris method which is a computationally efficient global sensitivity analysis method and the Sobol method, which allows a more comprehensive sensitivity analysis to be conducted. Results show that while considering the long-term extra-warm and typical future, the building response would be similar. It is projected that building envelope parameters such as window conductivity, infiltration rate, external wall insulation thickness as well as operational parameters such as cooling set point would play an important role in a buildings future cooling demand. Consequently, the results of this study enhance the understanding of the significance of design parameters during the building design stage specifically in long-term future, and for different climate conditions.
Date of Award1 Aug 2024
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorRodger Edwards (Supervisor) & Gregory Lane-Serff (Supervisor)


  • Regional climate models
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Climate change
  • Building resiliency
  • Building simulation

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