UK government takes steps to cut emissions in new and existing buildings

Barrett 'green' home

The UK government yesterday unveiled new proposals to cut carbon emissions from new and existing buildings.

Communities Minister Andrew Stunell said that changes to building regulations would make new homes, shops and offices warmer and cheaper to run, while supporting the government’s carbon reduction commitments.

Developed with the construction industry, the new proposals will pave the way for the introduction of zero-carbon homes from 2016 while reducing the regulatory cost for businesses.

The previous government had set a target of 2016 for all new homes to be built to zero-carbon standards.

The new proposals set out revised regulations that will increase the energy efficiency of homes from 2013 onwards, including the requirement that when existing homes are modified energy efficiency improvements are also undertaken.

These improvements could also be undertaken as part of the government’s flagship Green Deal home energy efficiency scheme, where upfront costs are repaid through the savings on energy bills.

The revised regulations, which are now open for consultation until April 27, promise to reduce energy bills by £150 compared to a typical home built in 2010, while saving businesses over £63 million by cutting “excessive” red tape.

“These much-needed changes will provide guidance that is both fit for purpose and will cut carbon emissions, whilst also saving money for householders and businesses alike,” commented Stunell.

For further information:
www.communities.gov.uk/
www.communities.gov.uk/planningandbuilding/buildingregulations/buildingregulationschanges/
www.communities.gov.uk/documents/planningandbuilding/pdf/2077415.pdf

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UK draft planning policy promises to drive sustainable growth (26-Jul 2011)
WWF resigns from UK Government’s zero carbon homes taskforce (4-Apr 2011)
New UK housing minister promises to support zero-carbon homes (4-Jun 2010)

02 February 2012

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