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Local Authorities can set energy standard beyond Part L in NPPF

The Government yesterday published its revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). The new NPPF highlights the need for quality as well as quantity in the building of new homes. Crucially, in its summary response to the consultation, the Government has clarified its position on local authorities setting higher energy requirements than those currently contained within Part L of the Building Regulations. Government response was as follows: A number of local authority respondents stated the view that the text in the revised Framework restricted their ability to require energy efficiency standards above Building Regulations. To clarify, the Framework does not prevent local authorities from using their existing powers under the Planning and Energy Act 2008 or other legislation where applicable to set higher ambition. In particular, local authorities are not restricted in their ability to require energy efficiency standards above Building Regulations. The Government remains committed to delivering the clean growth mission to halve the energy usage of new buildings by 2030. The need for clarity on this issue was the subject of a recent joint letter from UKGBC, Core Cities UK and UK 100 to the former Housing Minister Dominic Raab MP. In March this year UKGBC, in association with Core Cities UK, published a Policy Playbook designed to help local authorities drive up the sustainability of new homes. The Playbook focuses on energy and carbon, mitigating overheating risk and assuring performance. Today, the Playbook has been updated to reflect the changes to the new NPPF and is available to download for free on the UKGBC website

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