John Tebbit: no new carbon to become a reality in 2016.

CPA celebrates energy efficiency standards pledge

Published:  26 November, 2009

LONDON: Yesterday’s announcement by Housing Minister John Healey MP confirmed that the UK will require all new homes to be zero carbon as a matter of law from 2016.


Over the past year the construction industry and other stakeholders have been developing a workable definition of zero carbon for new homes that can also deliver 'no new carbon' for every new home from 2016. As part of that work, the Construction Products Association has been tasked by government to co-ordinate the work involved with the Zero Carbon Hub.

John Tebbit, industry affairs director at the CPA, said: "A typical home built to today's standards emits about two tonnes of CO2 from regulated uses such as heating, hot water and fixed lighting and about another 1.5 tonnes from unregulated uses such as electricity for cookers, TVs and other appliances. A zero carbon home will have to take all of that down to zero.

"This is done in three stages. The first stage is to set a very high standard for the energy efficiency of the home itself. That means the walls, roof, floor and windows all need to be built to high energy efficient standards and care taken to reduce air leakage. It is essential that the fundamental fabric of the home saves as much energy as possible. Getting this right can cut the 2 tonnes of regulated CO2 by up to a third.

"The next stage, known as 'carbon compliance', covers all the heating, hot water and lighting. It includes on site renewable energy such as solar thermal and photovoltaics.

"The zero carbon home has to achieve a minimum 70% reduction compared to today's home.

"The final stage is 'allowable solutions'. This covers a number of options, although none have been confirmed as yet.

"The housebuilder could decide to put more on site renewables into the home and generate enough zero carbon electricity to offset the remaining 2.1 tonnes of CO2.

"The CPA believes that much confusion has been caused by the term 'zero carbon' and that 'no new carbon' would be a clearer and more accurate term."

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