New homes and buildings in England will have to produce significantly less CO2 under new rules announced by the government to help the country move towards net zero. Published 15 December 2021

Who says: Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities and Eddie Hughes MP

 

  • Changes to building regulations will help UK deliver net zero
  • New homes will have to produce around 30% less CO2
  • Important step for industry ahead of Future Homes and Buildings Standard in 2025

New homes and buildings in England will have to produce significantly less CO2 under new rules announced by the government in December 2021 to help the country move towards net zero.

Under the new regulations, CO2 emissions from new build homes must be around 30% lower than current standards and emissions from other new buildings, including offices and shops, must be reduced by 27%.

Heating and powering buildings currently makes up 40% of the UK’s total energy use.

Installing low carbon technology, such as solar panels and heat pumps, and using materials in a more energy efficient way to keep in heat will help cut emissions – lowering the cost of energy bills for families and helping deliver the UK’s climate change ambitions.

All new residential buildings, including homes, care homes, student accommodation and children’s homes, must also be designed to reduce overheating, making sure they are fit for the future and protect the most vulnerable people. Improvements to ventilation will also be introduced to support the safety of residents in newly-built homes and to prevent the spread of airborne viruses in new non-residential buildings.

The changes announced to the government’s Building Regulations, which set the standards in England for the design, construction and alteration of buildings, follow a public consultation and will come into effect from June 2022.

They will raise standards and are an important step towards a cleaner greener built environment, paving the way for the Future Homes and Buildings Standard in 2025, which will mean all future homes are net zero ready and will not need retrofitting.

Housing Minister Eddie Hughes said:

Climate change is the greatest threat we face and we must act to protect our precious planet for future generations.

The government is doing everything it can to deliver net zero and slashing CO2 emissions from homes and buildings is vital to achieving this commitment.

The changes will significantly improve the energy efficiency of the buildings where we live, work and spend our free time and are an important step on our country’s journey towards a cleaner, greener built environment.

Further information

Alongside amendments to the Building Regulations, there are 5 new Approved Documents:

There will be a 6 month period before the new regulations come into force on 15 June 2022. Transitional arrangements are in place which mean that if a building notice, initial notice, or full plans for building work are submitted to a local authority before 15 June 2022, then provided the building work commences by 15 June 2023, work on that individual building is permitted to continue under the previous standards.

As well as setting out measures for the 2021 uplift to the Building Regulations, the government response to the Future Buildings Standard consultation also sets out plans for the implementation of the Future Buildings Standard from 2025. This includes plans to start a full technical consultation on the FBS in 2025.

How to meet this uplift building standard? Come and see at Hockerton Housing Project.

Building an Eco home in Hockerton construction and performance details

Building an Eco home in Hockerton construction and performance details

Thinking of how to build a low carbon home? Our new eBook can help. Packed full of useful detailed information based on our experiences of living here. It will inspire you and enable you to understand how zero carbon houses can be built. Available on kindle Buy Here.

Luke Risdon has edited the book and says;

“A fascinating factual guide to the construction and performance of the homes at Hockerton Housing Project.”

 

Luke describes the editing and publishing process for our eBook.

The eBook is fundamentally based on a series of information packets created as handouts for visitors to the project. These were then formatted into a rudimentary non editable PDF and editable word document. However, the editable word document version was lost. This meant using the non-editable PDF. To circumvent this issue, we chose to purchase Adobe acrobat. This allowed us to easily edit the PDF and fix any formatting issues that arose.

 

However, once the PDF was formatted to our liking, we discovered that formatting for a kindle Ebook is vastly different. This required a new, free, piece of software called “Kindle create”. Kindle create allows you to format your project directly for kindle and general Ebook publication. But it is not as simple as uploading your finished PDF into Kindle create. Many issues arose such as the fact that the PDF was in a two-page landscape layout and kindle only accepts portrait.

 

Once the document was finally formatted to Kindle’s criteria, came the task of self-publishing. This was remarkably easy compared to the formatting stage. Amazon has an entire self-publishing pathway known as Kindle Direct Publishing. It is open to anyone to encourage independent writers to publish on kindle. They will even print paperback copies for free. Once you have uploaded your document and cover all you have to do is jump through a few more hoops and you have published a digital book.

 

We then pulled out of Adobe as we no longer needed it and they refunded us the full cost which was very kind of them!

Luke Risdon

Date posted: January 20, 2022 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Eco homes Existing Homes New Build Performance Monitoring

Move to Gable Drive Hockerton Nottinghamshire Contact us Almost gone! SSTC now SOLD

There is a unique opportunity to purchase one of the most energy efficient homes in the UK, nestled in the rural village of Hockerton, near the bustling country town of Southwell and next door to the Hockerton Housing Project a world-renowned sustainable development.

Eco home lake view 7 Gables Drive Hockerton

SOLD Eco home lake view  Gables Drive Hockerton

This home offers a fantastic opportunity to live in a house fit for the future. Warm and comfortable living with built in resilience. The space is flexible and full of light with a very spacious conservatory to the south. The garden is landscaped, spacious and teaming with wildlife.  The house sits close to other “eco” houses with a good social feel. The local pub is just a short walk away. Southwell just over the hill offers good shops, restaurants, schools and many other amenities within a thriving community. Full details available in the sale brochure here. The super insulated earth sheltered design works very well indeed at keeping bills to a minimum and the environmental impact low. It is a 2 or 3 bedroom home so suitable for singles to small families. It would be an ideal place to grow up in! So “How to buy an eco home in Nottinghamshire”,

Contact us now before it’s gone to arrange a viewing and put in your offer.

Property Location:

Gables Drive, Hockerton, Southwell, Notts NG25 0QU.

Tenure: 999-year lease with annual peppercorn rent in perpetuity.

 Guide Price: Offers sought over £392 000 for quick sale.

According to The Move Market Last sold for £360 000 in 2016 and now worth £408 000

Eco homes or passive house or green houses come in many names but this is a very special opportunity!

How to buy an eco home in Nottinghamshire –

Do not delay Contact us now!

Video tour here

 

Date posted: April 24, 2021 | Author: | 1 Comment »

Categories: Eco homes Existing Homes

Retrofit for the FutureThis week we popped in to one of the homes that we retrofitted in 2010/11 as part of a Government-funded project, Retrofit for the Future, to find out how it was performing.

The headline finding is that the house is now using 9% of the energy it previously used for space and water heating; down from 12493kWh to 1133kWh. Overall energy use has been reduced by 75%, with the carbon emissions from the remaining use offset by a cost-effective investment in off-site renewables.

We visited after one year and found that actual energy use was 47% less than that predicted by SAP. There has been a further significant fall since then. Over the intervening years, the average energy use has been 30% of the use originally predicted for space and water heating, ventilation and lighting; and total average use has been 50% of use in that first year.

We expect heat usage to remain steady at this lower level (for the current occupancy patterns) as the fall can be attributed to one-off factors in that first year:

  • the building was drying out
  • the thermal mass had no heat stored as the build completed in early autumn
  • the winter of 2010/11 was particularly cold

Use of energy for appliances and cooking remains the largest influence on energy use, forming two-thirds of annual use on average. As highlighted in previous posts this is very dependent on working patterns and the number of residents. The final 3% of energy use is by the metering system itself – with metering on 8 rings in the house to enable this analysis.

Last, but certainly not least, was the residents’ feedback. The most notable problem was a rain sensor on the automated Velux windows in the sunspace, but that has been repaired quickly enough, and the occupants continue to enjoy the comfort of their old but cheaper-to-heat home.

Date posted: January 28, 2016 | Author: | 1 Comment »

Categories: Eco homes Existing Homes Performance Monitoring

energy conservation 1(HHP)

Have we ever mentioned how thermal mass keeps our homes warm in winter and cool in summer?

No doubt if you have visited us you’ve heard the stats and felt the benefit, but a day like today makes the benefits all the more evident.

The thermal comfort of our homes is met through the application of three key design principles:

  • Thermal mass to store heat in the summer months to keep the home cool in summer and warm in winter
  • Passive solar gain to reduce the need for space heating and artificial lighting
  • Super-insulation and buffer zones to provide a reduced temperature gradient between the inside and outside of homes.

So on a day like today we shut the triple-glazing between the living space and buffer zones, along with curtains and shutters if we are out and about, to keep out warm air and solar gain; and let the thermal mass soak up the heat when we are around the house. We have built passive ventilation into our buffer zones – otherwise known as skylights in the conservatory and porch area – which are vital to keeping the temperatures in those spaces comfortable.

Given the warnings yesterday from the Committee on Climate Change, we think cooling, or overheating, is an issue that needs addressing as part of the government’s home energy strategy. It should not be an add-on as there can be a conflict between approaches that keep heat in during winter and keep it out over summer.

The positioning of insulation in a construction element was completely disregarded by SAP up to and including SAP2005, and continues to be ignored by RdSAP. But it is essential if you want to get the heat storage benefits of thermal mass throughout the year for cooling, heat storage & release.  Our walls, floor and roof could have the insulation placed on the inside, which would give exactly the same U-Values and hence RdSAP result, but completely different and appalling thermal performance of the house as a whole in warmer weather.  Instead of being absorbed into the thermal mass, the passive solar gain would continue to raise the temperature until vented in some way.

Even though this is beginning to be recorded by SAP, RdSAP does still not differentiate between internal and external solid wall insulation. Neither assessment reflects the benefits in their overall assessment of thermal comfort. If the Government wants to prepare homes for the 21st century, and beyond, these tools will need to both recognise and reward the way external insulation can “lock in” the mass of the walls to deliver summer cooling and winter heating.

 

Date posted: July 1, 2015 | Author: | 4 Comments »

Categories: Eco homes Existing Homes New Build