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The Cost of Zero Carbon Homes – New data from The Zero Carbon Hub

From 2016, all new-build  homes will need to meet tough energy efficiency and carbon saving targets. Part L of the Building Regs will require zero carbon emissions from regulated energy in all new homes and clearly the cost of achieving this will be a subject for much debate by house builders and other interested parties. The Zero Carbon Hub (ZCH) , a private/public partnership looking at how the policy can be implemented has now come up with some costs. The analysis shows a declining cost over time,  driven by ongoing reductions in the installed cost of solar Photovoltaics, a better understanding of the costs of delivering highly energy efficient buildings and changes to the detail of the standard itself over the last few years, not least the watering down of the Zero carbon definition. The current costs compared to the ZCH’s first published estimates in 2011 has in real terms halved and the projections set out by ZCH suggest that costs may continue to fall up to 2020.

JB Comments Even so, costs are set to increase in the short term, especially where developments are not planned with these changes in mind. Coupled to the Community Infrastructure Levy Charges (CIL) and a raft of other regulations and local policies to negotiate, scheme viability will be tested.Therefore, understanding how to achieve the targets and planning a low/zero carbon low energy strategy at the earliest stage in the planning and design process is a critical part in the mix. 


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