CO2 emissions
© Joe Kirby

New government regulations mean that new build housing in England will have to produce significantly less carbon, as the country moves towards net-zero targets

Under the new regulations, CO2 emissions from new build homes must be around 30% lower than current emissions from other new buildings, including offices and shops.

Heating and powering buildings currently make up 40% of the UK’s total energy use, therefore installing low carbon technology, such as solar panels and heat pumps will help to cut emissions and lower the cost of energy bills for families.

All new builds, including homes, care homes, student accommodation, and children’s homes, must also be designed to reduce overheating, making sure they are fit for the future and protect the most vulnerable people.

Improvements to ventilation will also be introduced to support the safety of residents in newly-built homes and to prevent the spread of airborne viruses in new non-residential buildings.

The changes to the government’s building regulations follow a public consultation and will come into effect from June 2022. The changes will help to raise standards and are an important step towards a cleaner greener built environment, paving the way for the Future Homes and Buildings Standard in 2025, which will mean all future homes are net-zero ready and will not need retrofitting.

‘A cleaner, greener built environment’

Housing minister Eddie Hughes said: “Climate change is the greatest threat we face and we must act to protect our precious planet for future generations.

“The government is doing everything it can to deliver net-zero and slashing CO2 emissions from homes and buildings is vital to achieving this commitment.

“The changes will significantly improve the energy efficiency of the buildings where we live, work and spend our free time and are an important step on our country’s journey towards a cleaner, greener built environment”.

The new regulations come alongside £6.6bn of direct investment into improving the energy efficiency of buildings.

A further £400m of funding was also announced for more than 200 local authority areas as part of a new Sustainable Warmth Competition.

The latest figures show almost half of the homes in England are now rated C or above for energy efficiency, compared to 14% in 2010.

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