Letter to Prime Minister argues that energy efficiency ratings should be rolled out to private buildings

The government must use its Energy Bill to roll out mandatory energy efficiency certificates in private sector buildings, the UK Green Building Council and British Property Federation have said.

Today, both organisations have sent an open letter signed by the heads of Hammerson, British Land and Land Securities to the Prime Minister urging the government to extend display energy certificates (DECs) to the private sector.

The DECs rate a building’s energy efficiency from A to G and are currently mandatory for public sector buildings.

The UKGBC and BPF believe that if all landlords are required to rate their buildings, a “league table” of green owners would develop which would push up standards.

“DECs provide essential data which is needed to implement energy reduction strategies – put simply, one needs to know how a building is performing before being able to take steps to reduce its energy use. DECs also provide a strong reputational incentive by providing easy-to-understand A-G comparisons,” the letter says.

The government has already said it will roll out DECs to private buildings by October 2012 in its Carbon Plan, released in March this year.

The letter argues that putting the requirement to have DECs in the Energy Bill is the only way this will happen in time.

“We urge you and your co-signatories to the Carbon Plan to lend your support to the use of the Energy Bill, currently before the House of Commons, as the vehicle for the necessary enabling legislation. We are concerned that if this opportunity is not taken, the deadline set out in the Carbon Plan is unlikely to be met,” it states.

The Energy Bill is to have its second reading the House of Commons today.

The letter is signed by 19 industry figures, including John Frankiewicz, chief executive of Willmott Dixon Capital Works, and Dan Labbad, chief executive of Lend Lease EMEA.