New and existing buildings in England will have to meet strict energy efficiency standards in the future under plans outlined by the government. The Climate Change Committee’s last annual report in June 2020 highlighted the need to make low carbon heating the dominant form of heating in the UK by the early 2030s and to improve the energy efficiency of buildings.

The government response to a consultation on the Future Homes Standard was published last week and sets out plans for all new-build homes to have low carbon heating and be zero-carbon ready by 2025 through amendments to part L of the Building Regulations. The government will also make some amendments to part F of the regulations, relating to ventilation for new-build homes.

A separate consultation, closing on 13th April 2021, has been launched on a Future Buildings Standard which proposes changes to parts L and F of the Building Regulations for new and existing non-domestic buildings to make them zero-carbon ready by 2025. This covers proposed uplifts in energy and ventilation standards for existing homes when work is done to them, and changes to deal with overheating in homes and other buildings. The plans follow the government’s commitment to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The government has laid out a timetable leading up to the introduction of the Future Homes Standard in 2025. This includes an interim uplift in part L standards for new build homes in 2021, aimed at achieving 31% reduction of emissions. Transitional provisions could extend time for compliance with the new interim standards to June 2023 but will apply on an individual property basis rather than on the whole development.

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