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17 Dec 2008 05:12:12

Improving existing homes to count for zero-carbon status



Improving existing homes to count for zero-carbon status
House builders will be allowed to make improvements to existing stock to count towards the zero-carbon status of their new developments, the Department of Communities and Local Government has announced.

Housing Minister Margaret Beckett reaffirmed the commitment to ensuring all new homes built after 2016 are zero-carbon at the launch of a consultation paper featuring various proposals.

Among them is the idea that improvements to existing homes could count towards meeting developers' zero-carbon targets.

The consultation paper proposes that new developments are built to a high level of energy efficiency and are powered by on-site microgeneration devices, with any extra energy needed coming from a list of "allowable" solutions.

Ms Beckett said: "I am absolutely committed to our 2016 target, and this demanding goal is already spurring action here and abroad.

"With the consultation process we are launching today, we are confident we will be able to achieve our ambitions while giving the industry flexibility for how they get there."

Government think tank Foresight claimed last month that making existing housing stock more energy efficient should be a priority and would be essential to meeting carbon reduction targets.

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