Green materials remain price sensitive

Published:  10 August, 2009

COVENTRY: The price of sustainable building products and materials cannot exceed standard material prices.

A study by the Royal Institution for Chartered Surveyors showed that most commercial occupiers and developers were prepared to pay a maximum premium of only about 7% sustainable buildings while governments and energy companies were prepared to pay a 9% premium.

Estimates of the cost of constructing such homes vary, but most analysts see building zero-carbon homes for a 20% price premium as overoptimistic.

The study also noted that Britain lags behind most leading countries and developing nations such as India and China in the importance placed on sustainable construction.

Only a third of respondents in the UK said their clients had rated sustainability as "important", with none considering it "very important", compared with a global average of 40% for the two categories.

Buildings account for more than 40 per cent of the UK's carbon emissions, and the government plans to make all new homes and schools zero rated by 2016, with all other new buildings following suit by 2020.


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