On 2nd May 2018 the Scottish Government released its latest publication ‘The Energy Efficient Scotland: Route Map’. The 20-year plan outlines the vision of Scotland being energy efficient and ensuring that all homes and buildings are warmer, greener and more efficient by 2040. The Scottish Climate Change Plan, published in February 2018, sets out the policies and proposals that will keep Scotland on course to achieve the 2050 target of cutting total greenhouse gas emissions by 80%. To achieve this, emissions from all buildings in Scotland will need to be near carbon neutral by 2050. The Route Map sets out ambitious targets for achieving the required energy efficiency in buildings.

It is anticipated that the achievement of these targets will see emissions reductions in the residential and services sectors of 23% and 59% respectively by 2032 based on 2015 levels. The publication also sets out that by 2032 improvements to the building fabric of domestic and non-domestic buildings, will result in a 15% reduction in domestic heat demand and 20% reduction in non-domestic heat demand respectively.

The Route Map has two components:

  • Tackling fuel poverty and energy inefficiency in domestic buildings; and
  • Increasing the energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings including the 20,000 buildings within the public sector.

The Scottish Government plans a staged implementation of energy standards by reviewing and building on the current regulations. To achieve its two key objectives, the Government proposes to set long term mandatory energy performance standards for all buildings in Scotland by 2040.

The proposed standards are:

  • Private rented homes to achieve an EPC rating of E by 2022, D by 2025, and C by 2030;
  • All homes with households in fuel poverty to reach an EPC rating of C by 2030 and B by 2040;
  • All owner occupied homes to reach an EPC rating of C by 2040;
  • All non-domestic buildings will be assessed and improved to the extent that it is technically feasible and cost effective by 2040.

The proposal outlines the use of a benchmark system for assessing energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings due to the variety of building sizes and uses that will be captured by the legislation. It is intended that the introduction of regulations will be phased dependent on the size of the buildings taking into account the larger buildings and decreasing the size in scope over time. The existing regulations set out in the Climate Change (Scotland) Act will be expanded upon to facilitate this. The current legislation only applies to buildings over 1,000m² and allows for deferment of improvements identified in the EPC by annual reporting the energy use.

The Scottish Government is seeking views on the proposals outlined in the Energy Efficient Scotland report. Further consultation will take place in 2019 on the plans for the non-domestic sector with a view to finalise plans by 2020, ahead of the commencement of the new regulations in 2021.

The current consultation will close on 27th July 2018 and we are collating views on the feasibility of achieving the proposed standards. To have your say, please email the compliance team at compliance@carbon2018.com or alternatively complete the contact form. To discuss this further please call Melanie Kendall-Reid on 01252 87 87 22.

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