I am writing in response to your Reform the Regs campaign.
The strategic projects business unit of Interserve Project Services is involved with the construction of large national projects — particularly in the education, health and custodial sectors. Most of the construction is new build and we need to adhere to the ever-increasing plethora of Building Regulations.
As technical manager, part of my responsibility is to ensure that the requirements of the Building Regulations are incorporated into our tenders. This is increasingly difficult when the gestation period for many projects — we do a lot of PFI — is so long and when the regulations are constantly under review.
My personal view is that the Building Regulations have reached a level that delivers well-designed and environmentally considerate buildings. The proposed changes will require enormous amounts of labour and policing to ensure that they are incorporated. I believe that such effort would be better spent on other improvements to design and construction, and on improving existing building stock.
New buildings comprise a tiny fraction of the total national building stock. There are literally thousands of buildings that are horrendously inefficient, energy-wise, when compared with buildings designed to the current Building Regulations. In my opinion, government intervention on these existing buildings will provide more benefits to the environment.
On a more global scale, I believe that the enormous efforts and manpower being invested in the UK would also be better spent, at least in part, by campaigning, lobbying and sanctioning the world “abusers” of energy — such as the USA and Australia — and persuading rapidly developing nations such as China and India to limit their impact on the global environment.
Austen Evans, technical manager, Interserve Strategic Projects