Industry bodies have attacked revisions to Parts F and L of the Building Regulations published this week, claiming firms will be unable to meet the deadlines for energy efficiency changes.
The regulations are aimed at saving 1 million tonnes of carbon a year by 2010 by improving the energy standards of buildings. But industry bodies say the delay in the announcement, which was originally due before the summer parliamentary recess, means that the industry will not have the necessary systems in place to cope with the demands.
The proposals set maximum carbon dioxide emissions levels for buildings, and introduce measures such as better insulation, improved efficiency of heating systems and mandatory testing for air-pressure leakage, for homes as well as non-dwellings. The overall goal is to cut fuel bills for new homes by up to 40% by next year.
John Tebbit of the Construction Products Association said needless delay in finalising the requirements and a failure to commit adequate resources to energy measuring tools would make it impossible to meet standards, particularly on non-residential properties where the compliance tool has yet to be developed.
He said: “For political reasons, the government has sat on the document over the summer. We now have no hope in hell of getting people trained to survey building efficiency, and to develop products and designs for next April.”
“We have no hope in hell of getting people trained to survey building efficiency”
We have no hope in hell of getting people trained to survey building efficiency
John Tebbit, Construction Products Association
The National Federation of Builders said problems would be particularly felt among smaller housebuilders.
A spokesperson said: “For many, the demands of these regulations are inappropriate to the traditional construction methods they employ.
The potential training and technology costs they face in such a short space of time will be significant.”