Property chiefs including the bosses of Heathrow, British Land and the Crown Estate have written to the Government urging it to strengthen green energy requirements for new buildings if the UK is to hit global warming goals.
More than 50 business leaders signed the open letter to business secretary Greg Clark and communities secretary Sajid Javid asking them to introduce new construction policy.
They said that current energy performance standards for buildings, which are pegged to 2020 targets, should be “significantly improved”.
The signatories, who also included Mike Barry, director of Marks & Spencer’s sustainability plan, veteran architect Peter Rogers and Standard Life Investments’ global head of real estate Paolo Alonzi, said the Government should agree new 2030 standards as soon as possible.
They suggest that by 2030, all new buildings should be ‘net zero carbon’, which means reducing all energy use as far as technically possible, with any remaining energy need met through renewable sources.
The UK’s buildings contributing around 30pc of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions.
But without stringent targets, the country will not be able to meet global warming targets set through the Paris Climate Agreement, the letter suggests.
Julie Hirigoyen, chief executive at UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), which has co-ordinated the letter, said: “Time and again UKGBC members tell me they are looking to the Government to provide policy certainty in order to drive investment and catalyse innovation.”
Building regulations have not been changed since 2014, she said, and the Government scrapped its zero carbon policy, which was designed to make all new homes carbon neutral, in 2015.
Ms Hirigoyen said this was “both confusing and unnecessary”.
Source: The Telegraph
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