The government and its quangos think they can save the world by introducing a Code for Sustainable Homes that fails to recognise where homes are built.
Build a ZedShed on a greenfield site five miles away from the nearest railway station, school and shops, stuff a few B&Q windmills on the roof, and use nothing more than studwork and rockwool to enclose the inside … oh and provide a boiler that requires a 20 tonne eight-wheel truck to bring you wood from the other side of the country every 16 weeks to fuel it, and yes, you can get quite a few stars on a meaningless scale.
Build a proper robust structure, next to all its required infrastructure (transport, food, education and health facilities) performing to 10-20% above Building Regulations and you get quite a few less stars on the scale and the quango will think the affordable housing in your scheme not worthy of public funds.
At a recent energy savings conference a speaker boasted that he can now get roof-mounted solar water-heating panels for £400 from China – built in a factory powered by the world’s dirtiest coal-powered power stations and flown over in a jet chucking out enough carbon dioxide to ensure the heater will be for ever carbon positive.
Let’s stop the madness. Scrap this ridiculous code and come up with something that looks at the whole impact of development including location and the source of components. Update it every two years to address changes in technology, performance and regulations. Perhaps you could call it EcoHomes.
Mark Cowell, Bracknell, Berkshire