UK Green Building Council (UK-GBC) are recommending the next government should prioritise energy efficiency and commit to improving the energy performance of homes in the UK, in the run up to the next general election.
Some of the key policy recommendations include:
- Improving the energy efficiency of the UK’s homes could cut energy expenditure by £370 per year, as well as reducing the need to import gas at such a high quantity. UK-GBC believe the next government should commit to improving homes to EPC ratings of C or above by 2035, with a closer target to improve the homes of low income households by 2025.
- Ensuring the number of new homes required, can be achieved faster if the homes are designed to a high quality and built using low carbon smart construction methods. The government must implement tighter Building Regulations to be zero carbon by 2020.
- Introducing binding emission reduction targets for the whole UK built environment, covering all sectors and both new build and existing buildings, Introducing mandatory energy ratings for all commercial buildings, which measure and publicly display the actual energy performance of buildings when they are in use. Current evidence shows that communicating this information increases awareness and leads to reductions in energy use.
- Commit to using public procurement and drive higher standards in public buildings and new publicly-funded housing, in their role to create sustainable buildings.
- Renewing the Greening Government commitments every five years, setting targets for the reduction of emissions, water use and waste from all public buildings.
- Following Brexit, the government need to ensure environmental protections and climate policies continue to stay strong, if not stronger.