NIBE Energy Systems welcomes the announcement by the Chancellor that all new homes will be required to have low carbon heating and world-leading levels of energy efficiency. This is aligned with the Committee on Climate Change recommendations in their recently published Housing Report . The Future Homes Standard is closely aligned with the Prime Minister’s Clean Growth Grand Challenge mission to at least halve the energy use of new build property by 2030. Futureproofing new homes is a no regrets option and is essential if we are to meet our climate change ambitions. With the Building Regulations review this year and a consultation on the Future Homes Standard, 2019 will be a significant year for the industry. We hope that these consultations will lead to a step change in the way we build and heat our homes.
The Chancellors announcement states that new homes will need to meet the Future Homes Standard by 2025, however, NIBE would like to see this standard adopted far sooner. Our policy paper, which was published earlier this year, called for a concrete end date for high carbon fossil fuels in new homes in the early 2020s with existing homes following in quick succession.
With over 220,000 new homes built last year and a requirement to build around 275,000 annually, we cannot afford to wait until 2025 to ensure that these homes are heated by low carbon sources. If we delay, we will need to retrofit low carbon heat in over 1.5 million new homes built after this standard is announced. This will add cost to both consumers and government and will ultimately cost the environment. The Committee on Climate Change state that retrofitting a new home to meet this standard once built could cost over £26,000 per home compared to an additional £4,800 if incorporated into the design of a new home.
Phil Hurley said “the announcement by the Chancellor is welcome and sets us on the right trajectory but the pace of change is not fast enough. The UK is not on track to meet its climate change targets and addressing our new homes is a quick win. There are plans to build at least 1.5 million new homes by 2022, we should not be building these to anything less than the Future Homes Standard or we will be adding to the problem by increasing emissions further, forcing higher energy bills on consumers and increasing costs further down the line to retrofit homes to this higher standard. This year will be an important one to drive change and NIBE Energy Systems looks forward to working with the Government and industry to ensure that our homes are future proofed, energy efficient, have lower energy bills and do not make achieving our carbon targets more challenging.”