A taskforce has been launched to help the West Midlands accelerate the construction of low carbon, energy-efficient homes
The Zero Carbon Homes Taskforce, which is being chaired by the UK Green Building Council, has been set up by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA).
It will support the region’s fight against climate change, making sure all new homes meet tough zero carbon standards from 2025 onwards.
The taskforce will provide local and expert insight into how the region plans for a net-zero future as it works towards achieving its ambitious target of being carbon neutral by 2041.
To help meet its target of being carbon neutral by 2041, the WMCA will enhance the performance of the existing building stock and improve the performance of new homes planned for the region.
Zero carbon ready
The WMCA aims to make all new homes ‘zero carbon ready’ from 2025.
This means that new built homes from 2025 onwards will be able to become ‘fully zero carbon’ as the electricity grid decarbonises, without the need for retrofitting and that they will produce 75-80% lower CO2 emissions compared to current levels.
Bringing technical expertise and market insight, taskforce members will raise the profile of this agenda in the West Midlands, offering insight into the future of construction and carbon reduction measures and advising on the direction of zero-carbon development within the region and further afield.
The taskforce will play a key role in achieving the WMCA’s zero-carbon ambitions through co-development of the implementation plan and future investment cases to government, directly supporting the delivery of zero carbon homes in the region.
The taskforce will look to clarify a new standard for the West Midlands, which goes above and beyond Building Regulations and keeps the region on track to meet net-zero by 2041.
Roadmap for zero carbon
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands and chair of the WMCA, said: “This new taskforce will help do exactly that, building on work which is already underway to understand our existing performance and what more needs to be done.”
Julie Hirigoyen, chief executive of the UK Green Building Council, will chair the taskforce which includes representatives across the construction, finance, academia, innovation and energy sectors.
Hirigoyen said: “We have secured a multi-disciplinary and highly experienced group of representatives from business, local government and academia, all of whom I am confident will play a critical role in ensuring that the WMCA adopts an ambitious and impactful approach to delivering zero carbon homes closely aligned with UKGBC’s own framework definition for net-zero carbon buildings.
“The taskforce will inform the development of a charter and a roadmap for zero carbon homes that the WMCA has a direct stake in, but importantly it should also set an example for other local authorities in the region to follow.
“This is a unique opportunity to bring the public and private sectors together to build back better by delivering homes fit for the future.”