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Code for sustainable buildings launched

A code for sustainable buildings catering for existing as well as new non-domestic buildings has been recommended in a report launched today at Ecobuild' 09.
The UK Green Building Council task force has produced the report (published March 4) recommending the new code, which will help set the target path for a carbon zero sustainable built environment by 2050.

The report recommends that the code should:

- set out the 'stretching targets' for a zero carbon sustainable built environment including carbon, energy, waste and water performance.

-Help ensure all buildings meet progressively more ambitious standards over time.

-Include a requirement for a 'building MOT', (performance checks on buildings) to enable data collection and benchmarking.

-Include mandatory disclosure of certain metrics in the public domain.

-Be owned by government but represent a shared vision with the industry.

-Should set the standards, metrics and targets that all sustainability tools should be aligned to and be compliant with.

The next steps are to establish a Code Working Group (including government and industry) to hammer out the details of the policy, map existing tools and standards and establish a set of agreed common metrics. The working group must also help drive data collection on the performance of buildings and develop the evidence base needed to demonstrate a business case for sustainable buildings.

The core task group members involved in the report include Ant Wilson, sustainable business unit director at Faber Maunsell. He said: 'I'm keen to see the Code Working Group set up as quickly as possible to ensure we get closer to getting the details of the code right'.

Around 20 UK-GBC member firms took part in working groups to discuss the code, 84 organisations responded to an online consultation and representatives from more than 80 organisations attended a workshop on the subject.

John Frankiewicz CEO of Willmott Dixon said: 'The code does not seek to re-invent the wheel but instead builds on the existing codes and regulations we have to fill in the gaps and cover the whole life of a building. It's also important that the code covers existing building stock and will bring the same level of focus we currently see in social house building through the Code for Sustainable Homes'.

To view the report click here
4 March 2009

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