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Passivhaus in Australia – Book Launch #expectmore

Both I (Talina) and my colleague Mia are passionate advocates and ambassadors for Passivhaus* in Australia.

In early 2019 we headed across the seas to Wellington, New Zealand for the South Pacific Passive House Conference 2019 #SPPHC2019 for a big dose of inspiration and to geek out on building science with other kindred folk in the industry who want to see healthier, comfortable and resilient buildings be the #newnormal for us antipodeans.

At this conference, Jason Quinn (New Zealand’s only Passivhaus Certifier) launched a book about “Passive House for New Zealand: the warm healthy homes we need”, giving away copies to all attendees. A few months later I was chatting with APHA board member Andy Marlow, and we both agreed that Australia needed a similar book…so we decided to make it happen!

We’d love to see this book go far and wide across the country – to educate about the benefits of #passivhaus, but more importantly for Australians to learn to #expectmore from their buildings, and be inspired by what’s possible.

The book has about 30 case studies, and while our early-adopters have mainly been new residential home-owners, there are also groundbreaking projects that include a child-care centre, multi-residential student accommodation, university buildings, renovation/retrofit projects and other commercial buildings. Our aim was to appeal to a wide audience, so there’s lots of beautiful images, useful stats/data, anecdotes from the owners/occupiers, and industry-insights. Here’s an example of a case study (which was our practice’s first Certified Passivhaus project):


Limited edition hard-copies were locally printed (on Uncoated 100% Recycled paper with eco-inks) for APHA members who sponsored the book or were involved in it’s creation. At this stage, no additional print-runs are planned, but that could potentially change if there’s a demand. We’ve got a few boxes of books that will be gifted to our clients, consultants, contractors, colleagues, community organisations, friends and family (and followers on social-media are already putting up their hands to request copies too!) We’ll see how we go with numbers – we might have to run a little giveaway as there sure is a lot of interest!


FREE digital downloads are available to everyone from the Australian Passive House Association website


The book was officially launched at the South Pacific Passive House Conference 2020 #SPPHC2020 last month – you can watch the launch here which gives an excellent overview of the book:


We absolutely love the front cover that feels so “Australian” thanks to the award-winning Gillies Hall Student Accommodation at Monash University by JCB Architects. (Photo by Peter Clarke).


Completing this publication was no small task (especially due to additional complications of the covid-lockdown!), so big thanks go to everyone involved:

  • Andy Marlow for effortlessly leading the whole project without breaking a sweat!
  • Mia Radic who put in countless hours to collect, collate, and write the case-studies, chasing the contacts, organising photography, preparing a graphic illustration to explain the Passivhaus principles (see below), and more!
  • Marcus Stang for coordinating all the ‘future projects’ whilst juggling a PhD, work and lockdown-logistics
  • Clare Parry for continuing to inspire us with your passivhaus-leadership and writing words for us :)
  • Jason Quinn for letting us steal his idea! The passivhaus community is always so generous in sharing knowledge with the ethos that a rising tide (metaphorical not literal!) lifts all ships so we’re very grateful for your generosity!
  • Rachel Rose our professional editor & wordsmith extraordinaire – thanks for your patience with the process, we learnt a lot from you & we think you may have a learnt a few non-kiwi expressions from us :)
  • James Chatterton our graphic designer for pulling all the content together and making it look super polished and professional
  • APHA Board members Chris Nunn and John Beurle for your keen eyes for proof-reading and additional editing to the text, plus APHA CEO Paul Wall and APHA admin-executive Rachael Alden for all your assistance and support too
  • Last but not least, a heartfelt thank you to ALL of our passionate passivhaus pioneers – the clients who took a leap of faith, their architects/designers, builders, consultants, the Certified Passivhaus Designers/Consultants/Tradespeople, suppliers and sponsors – without all of you there would be no book to share your stories!!

Illustration by Mia Radic, Talina Edwards Architecture


We’re already looking forward to the 10-year anniversary book which will have hundreds (perhaps thousands!) of completed Certified Passivhaus projects here in Australia. There are countless projects currently in the certification process, under construction, on the drawing board, and being conceptualised as we speak… There are inspiring international precedents (i.e. Vancouver, New York, Belgium, China) where the uptake of Certified Passivhaus projects has been exponential in a very short time frame…so watch this space!!



*FOOTNOTE: Passivhaus? OR Passive House?




At Talina Edwards Architecture, we are passionate about the benefits that Passive House projects deliver! We have two Certified Passive House Designers in our practice, and our Owl Woods Passive House is one of the first 20 certified Passive House projects in Australia…with more to come!

Please contact us if you want to learn more!

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