Following the Code for housing which seems to be setting the sustaintainbility agenda the industry, the UKGBC UK Green Building Council today launched a report on behalf of the government that starts to set out an agenda for acheiving zero carbon non-domestic buildings by 2020
From the press release at UKGBC:
Key findings in the report are as follows:
1) It IS possible to reduce carbon emissions from energy use down to zero in the majority of new non-domestic buildings, as long as on-site, near-site and off-site renewable solutions are employed
2) There is a cost associated with building to zero carbon. Cost varies widely with both the form and the use of the building. However, preliminary modeling suggest that the premium could range from over 30% down to as low as 5 or 10% of current baseline costs.
3) A challenging yet achievable time-frame for achieving zero carbon new non-domestic buildings along the lines set for housing is needed. With a trajectory in place similar to that adopted for the Code for Sustainable Homes, then a deadline of 2020 could be adopted.
Will this report, like the code for housing and BREEAM will now shape the direction for construction and the built environment for the next decade. As fellow blogger Phil over at Zero-Champion points out in his review of this report – a move from rhetoric to reality.
My initial thoughts on the costs associated with moving to carbon zero is that the ‘preliminary modeling’ figures are similar to the figures used to describe the ‘waste’ in the industry, (ie total waste or muda. – time, costs, lack of integration, non value-adding, unproductive activities, reworking, delays, as well as material waste).
Therefore a renewed drive on business improvement and collaborative working would pay for zero carbon buildings and facilities. (this is to some degree supported in the Strategy for Sustainable Construction which includes the Strategic Forums target for an integrated industry to support a sustainable one)
I shall be returning to this with further posts when I have digested the report