What is Plan L?
The energy efficiency requirements of the Building Regulations in England are being updated. Part L 2021 is due to come into effect in June 2022 and will act as an ‘uplift’ to help the construction industry adapt to changing regulations and low carbon heating.
This change is part of the roadmap to the introduction of the Future Homes Standard, currently due to be implemented in 2025. That policy will require all new homes to be ‘zero carbon ready’, meaning they will be properly equipped for the decarbonisation of the energy grid.
What are the requirements?
The Future Homes Standard will demand homes built from 2025 produce at least 75% less carbon emissions than what’s currently allowed under the Building Regulations.
One of the aims of Part L 2021 is to build the knowledge and expertise to deliver net zero carbon homes. To do that, the uplift will deliver a 31% reduction in carbon emissions without the need for additional carbon offsetting measures and include a number of metrics that will underpin building performance in the years and decades to come.
Building fabric standards are ambitious but, in terms of U-values, are not a significant leap compared to Part L 2013. The airtightness and ventilation of the notional dwelling are not as ambitious as the fabric performance. Ventilation continues to depend on unreliable and uncontrollable natural ventilation, which has disappointed some in the industry.
New homes will be assessed against the following four performance metrics.
With increasing amounts of renewable energy generation, fuel factors are no longer required to offset ‘dirty’ electricity generation. This will adversely impact any property using oil, LPG or solid mineral fuel, and therefore stands to make the most difference to homes that are off-grid.
How long do you have?
For any projects with plans or notices submitted before June 2022, there’s a cut-off date of June 2023 for building to start for the current Part L (2013) to apply. From that point on, older versions of Part L will no longer apply to any projects, regardless of when plans or notices were submitted.
Any plans or notices submitted after June 2022 must adhere to the new interim Part L standards.
How can we help you?
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