Energy efficiency targets raised for homes and businesses

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Energy efficiency targets raised for homes and businesses

The government has released amendments to Part L efficiency provisions on houses and businesses to lower energy bills and deliver “savings of £16m per year to business” and a 6.4 million tonnes drop in carbon dioxide. 

Parliamentary undersecretary of state Baroness Hanham said that the changes would “take an important and technically meaningful step towards zero carbon homes”.

Carbon-dioxide targets for new “non-domestic” buildings have now been set to deliver a 9 per cent improvement on 2010 standards.

The amendments are not due to be introduced until 6 April 2014 in a move the government claimed was to give the industry “enough time to prepare”. The introduction of the changes were originally scheduled for October 2013.

The regulations for homes and businesses relate to the conservation of energy with an aim towards the government’s 2016 target of zero carbon-emissions homes.

Hanham stated that she would look to introduce “minimum energy efficiency standards” when “specific building services work including air conditioning and lighting replacements are carried out” in business premises.

The announcement has also stalled the much-delayed so-called “conservatory tax”, the initiative, which requires households to ensure their property meets basic standards of energy efficiency if planning large extensions to their homes.

Hanham said: “I am also announcing today the decision not to proceed at this time with a strengthening of the minimum energy efficiency standards for extensions and replacement windows to existing homes”.

She said that it would add “additional costs on hard-working families trying to improve their homes” although she had, “not ruled out the possibility of reforms to standards in the future”.

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