0:03 AM, 27th September 2023, About 2 months ago 10
It’s taken nearly a week, but the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has hit out at Prime Minister Rishi Sunnak’s U-turn on energy performance certificate (EPC) requirements for rented homes.
It says that an alternative system needs to be put in place to tackle climate change – and that the methodology used needs to change to encourage landlords to deliver energy improvements.
In a statement, RICS says: “The dropped plans for the domestic Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) in the private rental sector were not entirely surprising given the housing industry has been calling for several years for clarity on dates and additional support.
“The ongoing indecision about this and related matters does not fill the built environment sector with confidence.”
The organisation adds that it is looking forward to the government providing an alternative solution to improving energy efficiency to tackle climate change and economic and social well-being.
RICCS adds: “The government should also use this time to undertake a much-needed reform of the EPC methodology to ensure we accurately assess and incentivise energy performance improvements.
“RICS welcomes the announcement of additional support for the boiler upgrade scheme; however, we reiterate the importance of a holistic strategy that promotes energy efficiency and decarbonisation that is not limited to energy products.”
Other critics have highlighted that while the government has extended the boiler upgraded scheme, the criteria for those who can access cash has been tightened.
The statement continues: “As part of this approach, the new second edition of Whole Life Carbon Assessment for the Built Environment (WLCA) will prove a powerful tool for achieving net zero targets in the built environment sector both in the UK and globally.”
As a way to measure carbon emissions in the built environment consistently and accurately, the RICS Whole Life Carbon Assessment (WLCA) could set the standard.
The second edition of this standard improves on the existing one by expanding its scope to include all types of buildings and infrastructure across their life cycle.
The standard was revised by RICS and a team of experts in decarbonisation, with the support of the Department for Transport UK and Zero Waste Scotland.
The 2nd edition maintains reliability and continuity, while promoting long-term solutions through reuse, recycling and redevelopment.
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