Federal Environment Agency Dessau

Setting an example in ecological matters

The new administrative building, with its bold, curved, meandering layout was one of the first buildings that in 2009 received the newly established seal of approval for sustainable building from the DGNB (German Sustainable Building Council) and the Federal Ministry for Building. The building materials used had to adhere to the following principles: They had to have been manufactured using the lowest possible energy expenditure, possess the qualities suitable for ecological building and be recyclable. The discussion even involved considering a construction made purely out of wood. However, on the basis of a survey by KREBS+KIEFER, the decision was made to use a reinforced concrete skeleton with flat slabs for the construction of the main building. For the facades of the building, the most versatile materials were used, such as wood, glass and bricks.

KREBS+KIEFER designed a complex saw tooth roof made of steel and glass for the atrium and forum, which incorporates a solar photovoltaic system. Approximately a fifth of the building's energy requirements are met by renewable sources. This includes one of the largest geothermal exchange systems currently in existence - a civil engineering structure with a 5 km long underground pipe system that KREBS+KIEFER collaborated on.


  • Structural Engineering
  • Rehabilitation & Preservation