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Wed April 08 2020

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Councils seek power to raise energy efficiency standards

5 Mar Ten of England’s biggest cities are pressing government for freedom to raise energy efficiency standards in houses built in their areas.

In a campaign coordinated by UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), council leaders and mayors from different political parties have asked the government to abandon proposed restrictions on their ability to cut carbon emissions from house-building.

In an open letter to the secretary of state for housing, the local politicians, including the mayors of London, the West Midlands and Greater Manchester, ask for freedom to set higher standards than government is proposing nationally.

Specifically, they want the ministry to scrap its recent proposal (in the consultation on Part L of the Building Regulations and the Future Homes Standard) to restrict local planning authorities from setting higher energy efficiency standards for dwellings.

“Not only would this hold back those areas which want to be more ambitious than the national minimum, but it would also level down areas like London, where developers have successfully been building to a higher standard for several years,” the letter says.

They write that “local leadership is absolutely central to achieving the government’s commitment to net zero carbon”.

Other signatories include Leeds, Newcastle and Sheffield city council leaders.

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