Inquiry being launched into ways of improving the energy efficiency of commercial and industrial building
A parliamentary inquiry is being launched into ways of improving the energy efficiency of Britain’s stock of commercial and industrial buildings.
The inquiry will look at how their performance can be improved, the barriers to cutting their carbon emissions and how these might be overcome by regulations and fiscal incentives and penalties.
The inquiry is being conducted by the All Party Urban Development Group, a committee of MPs and peers that scrutinises regeneration policy. Nick Raynsford, the former construction minister, is among its members. The British Property Federation will provide secretarial services.
The committee is calling for submissions from central government and the public and private sectors.
Less attention has been paid to the energy efficiency of commercial buildings.
Clive Betts, MP
Clive Betts, the chair of the committee, said: “The built environment accounts for 50% of the UK’s carbon emissions, and although debate has so far focused on people’s homes, less attention has been paid to the energy efficiency of commercial buildings, which account for half of this figure.”
The move follows calls from industry bodies such as the RICS for the government to introduce fiscal incentives and a compulsory Code for Sustainable Buildings to improve the energy efficiency of Britain’s stock.
Last year, the RICS called on the government to reduce VAT from 17.5% to 5% for refurbishment and retrofit, and ask for a share of an EU fund for improving the buildings in deprived areas.
The inquiry follows Building’s 99% campaign, launched in 2006. This advocates the introduction of incentives to improve Britain’s existing stock.
For more on the 99% campaign, go to Campaigns at www.building.co.uk