A government consultation on Future Homes Standards has the potential to reduce insulation on new homes by 50 %.
It also proposes stopping local authorities like B&NES Council from imposing higher standards. B&NES currently requires new homes to be built with 19% lower CO2 emissions than national minimum standards.
Please help us and the planet by spending under a minute of your time to provide feedback to the consultation – either by sending an email to the government’s consultation (email at bottom of this page) and/or by writing to your MP. The deadline for the consultation is this coming Friday 7th February.
Background: further detail
Although the new standard proposes reducing new home carbon emissions by more than 75% it allows developers to meet this requirement by installing (low carbon) air source heat pumps to buildings with half the insulation of that required by current new homes.
The large developers are bound to choose this route as they are always looking to reduce their costs to maximise their profits and don’t care about the homes running costs or carbon emissions. The proposal recognises this risk by suggesting an annual energy running cost cap might be imposed but provides no concrete proposals to be included in this new standard.
These new homes, once built, will then have to be retrofitted with additional insulation within 15 years in order to help the UK meet its carbon emission targets.
B&NES Council currently requires new homes to be built to higher energy standards – currently with 19% lower carbon emissions than the national minimum required under Building Regulations. The Future Homes Standard will remove this right from Local Authorities, making it significantly more difficult for B&NES to achieve its ambition to be carbon neutral by 2030.
The proposed standard is clearly flawed, and if you were being cynical you might interpret it as allowing government ministers to claim to be green by announcing a 75% reduction in new homes carbon emissions, while keeping large developers happy and allowing them to deliver homes a cheaply as possible without regard to our future climate targets.
- B&NES commissioned report on the new standard
- London Energy Transformation Initiative – web page describing the issue – including reports, proforma letter for your MP and other material
Subject: Feedback on the Future Homes Standard Consultation
I would like to object to the proposed Future Homes Standards, although laudably it aims to reduce new home carbon emissions by 75% the proposal is flawed:
- It would allow developers to build homes with 50% less insulation that the current (2013 Part L) standards if they install air source heat pumps
- It would stop local authorities like Bath & North East Somerset imposing higher than national standards (currently 19%), and make it very difficult the council to achieve its ambitions to address the climate emergency by becoming carbon neutral by 2030
I believe future new homes should be built to be carbon neutral to help mitigate the threat of climate change. Doing this will not impact the number of homes being built or developers profit margins, just reduce slightly already very high land prices for new developments in Bath.
Could you please rethink this proposal by:
- Imposing higher minimum fabric (insulation) standards for new homes than the current 2013 standard, while retaining the proposed 75% reduction in carbon emissions proposed
- Provide concrete and binding proposals for maximum annual energy costs for new homes
- Allow Local Authorities where ‘viable’ to impose higher local energy standards to help mitigate climate change