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DGNB Climate Positive award

The DGNB has set itself the goal of highlighting exemplary projects, presenting their success factors and inspiring others in the process. For this reason, the DGNB has created the Climate Positive award. This can be awarded to buildings that are demonstrably carbon-neutral based on their real consumption data. It rewards buildings that already do more today through their carbon-neutral operation and thus make a positive contribution to the climate and energy turnaround.

The Climate Positive award is granted by the DGNB to buildings for a period of one year, which meet the technical requirements and provide the relevant evidence as part of a certification for buildings in use.



The Climate Positive award can only be granted within the framework of DGNB certification for buildings in use. For this, the building must have been in operation for at least one year.

Further information on the DGNB System for Buildings in Use can be found here.

When is a building considered carbon neutral?

A building is considered to be carbon-neutral if the difference between the emissions emitted during operation and the emissions saved by the production and external provision of CO2-free energy is zero or less than zero over a period of one year.

A carbon-neutral building has demonstrably minimised the consumption of building energy, user energy and CO2 emissions from the supply systems. In addition, the production and use of renewable energy to cover the remaining domestic demand has been maximised and excess energy has been exported. If the building achieves a balanced CO2 balance through the purchase of remotely generated renewable energy sources, such as green electricity or biogas, minimum requirements for the building envelope must be demonstrated. The inclusion of remote energy sources in the CO2 balance must be communicated and key figures on solar potential, generation and consumption must be disclosed.

What are the specific requirements for the DGNB Climate Positive award?

  • Evidence for a negative annual CO2 balance according to the operational accounting framework, based on measured values across a whole year.
  • Efficient use of energy to cover own consumption: For all buildings, the minimum requirements from ENEV 2014 for the building envelope must be complied with.
  • Coverage of own consumption, calculated over one year, where appropriate via production of energy on own site.
  • If renewable energy generated off-site is purchased: Compliance with the minimum requirements for the energy supplier according to framework as well as a high degree of transparency regarding the quantities.
  • Identification of the degree of solar utilisation or own production (proportion of the renewable energy produced to the renewable energy production capacity) as well as the degree of self-supply (proportion of the renewable energy produced and used on site as a proportion of total energy consumption).

What evidence must be provided for the award?

The evidence to be provided is:

  • Calculation of the CO2 balance according to the accounting rules of the framework (operational lifecycle balance) and necessary input data in the DGNB-CO2 accounting tool of the criterion ENV1-B Climate protection and energy.
  • Evidence for fulfilment of the minimum requirements from ENEV 2014 for the building envelope.
  • If renewable energy generated off-site is purchased: Evidence of exclusivity (coupled delivery of evidence of origin and energy medium) and additionality of the production according to framework - applies e.g. for green electricity, biogas, district heat.
  • Declaration of the metrics "degree of own supply" and "degree of solar utilisation".

Can the award also be granted for entire portfolios?

No. The Climate Positive award cannot be granted for an entire portfolio. The certificates must be checked individually for the operation of all buildings.


Dietmar Geiselmann
Manager Existing Buildings
Phone: +49 711 722322-59
d.geiselmann at dgnb.de


Seema Issar
Consultant Certification
Phone: +49 711 722322-63
s.issar at dgnb.de