On 18th March 2019 the Bishop of Salisbury, Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, received a written answer to a question on environmental standards for building new homes:
The Lord Bishop of Salisbury:
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what action they are taking to support housing developers and homeowners to improve the environmental standards of new homes; and what steps they are taking to improve the environmental impact of existing housing stock.
Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth: As set out in the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy, we plan to consult in 2019 on an uplift to the energy efficiency requirements for new homes and other buildings where there are safe, practical, cost-effective and affordable opportunities to do so. We have built into the planning system, through the revised National Planning Policy Framework clear expectations on reducing emissions, adaptation, mitigation and resilience to climate change impacts.
The Government is committed to improving the energy efficiency of existing buildings, and there are a number of policies in place to support this, including the Private Rented Sector Minimum Standard and the Energy Company Obligation scheme.
In August 2018, the Government’s Social Housing Green Paper asked whether Government should consider changes to what constitutes a decent home, including considering whether criteria around energy performance is demanding enough and delivers the right standards in social housing. The consultation closed in November 2019 and we will publish a response in due course.