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Next steps towards zero-carbon housing

More than 25% of UK carbon emissions are generated by housing and, as a result, the Government has pledged to produce a clear environmental standard for new homes to take them out of the equation, ensuring they do not contribute to the UK’s carbon footprint.

In December, Grant Shapps Housing Minister, announced the Government’s next steps in its programme to make all new homes zero carbon-rated from 2016.

Working towards this goal, the Zero Carbon Hub, together with industry experts, academics and environmental groups including the Energy Saving Trust, and the UK Green Building Council has identified a range of measures that can be taken on-site to reduce carbon emissions with evidence to back up their findings. The recommendations include using renewable energy technologies on site, such as solar power and heat pumps.

The minister also confirmed the Government is looking into the ways in which housebuilders can support local renewable energy schemes amid calls for a Community Energy Fund, which would mean that zero carbon could be partly achieved via contributions to a fund used to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. The Community Infrastructure Levy was cited as a way for councils to access funds from new housing development that could then be used for local renewable energy generation.

For more information go to www.communities.gov.uk

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Watts Bulletin editor: Trevor Rushton.

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