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Building Regulations

Volume 405: debated on Wednesday 14 May 2003

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To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1) what assessment he has made of the contribution that building regulations make to the achievement of Government targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions; [113183](2) what assessment his Department has made of the scope for amending building regulations to require new buildings to contribute towards the energy used within them; [113185](3) what changes he plans to enhance the contribution that building regulations make to the energy efficiency of new buildings. [113184]

The energy performance requirements in Part L of the Building Regulations have been reviewed twice in the last decade to see what contribution they can make towards achieving the Government's energy performance and carbon dioxide emissions targets, while remaining proportionate, cost-effective and practical. Other greenhouse gases are controlled in different ways. In the Regulatory Impact Assessment published in October 2001 to accompany the latest amendment to Part L of the Building Regulations, which came into effect in April 2002, it was estimated that the changes would lead to a reduction in carbon emissions of 1.4 million tonnes of carbon (equivalent to about 5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide) per year in 2010.The consultation document published in June 2000 that proposed this amendment included an assessment of the scope for improving performance standards over the period to 2008. Both these documents can be inspected on the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister website at to plans for future enhancements, it was announced that a new review of the Building Regulations would occur in the Energy White Paper with the aims of bringing a further major revision into effect in 2005 for new buildings and refurbishment work, and raising standards even more over the next decade.