Friday, September 2, 2016

Working in London? New Energy & Carbon Standards from 1 October

The UKGBC has warned that many people are unaware that from October 1, the London Plan will require housing in the capital to meet standards that are 35% stricter than Part L of Building Regulations – or pay cash in lieu into a carbon offset fund.

It is also a higher bar than Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4, which was to be the standard before the coalition scrapped the zero carbon homes policy.

The Greater London Authority (GLA) is unique because it has the power to impose sustainability requirements. Other local authorities have to rely on negotiating with developers through the planning system.

The GLA announced earlier this year that it was pursuing a policy of zero carbon homes, though its definition is slightly different from the one used by the government – before it scrapped the national 2016 and 2019 targets.

Richard Twinn, policy advisor at the UK Green Building Council, warned many are still in the dark.

The 35%-above-building-regs requirement is already in force for both housing and commercial buildings in London - what is new is the carbon offsetting fund for housing that fails to reach the required standard.

There are serious implications for everyone involved in residential.  Sub-contractors will need to ensure their work is up to standard. It will have a trickle-down effect and potentially there will be more money for offset solutions. District heating is big in the GLA because it’s a planning requirement that you have considered it

David Frise, Head of Sustainability at BESA warns “This represents a threat to members if they are not aware of the changes but a big opportunity for those who can design and install low carbon low energy systems”.

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