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UK property sector demands net zero buildings

More than 50 property and construction leaders have called on the UK government to set net zero building targets for new buildings by 2030 in order to meet the Paris Agreement.

An open letter to government ministers has been published by the UK Green Building Council, signed by major property companies including Lendlease, JLL, Cundall, Colliers, Knauf and British Land.

“The construction and property sector stands ready to deliver on bold targets for energy performance and low carbon solutions,” the letter states.

“But we urgently need both medium- and long-term policy certainty to drive significant investment and catalyse innovation.”

The open letter said the companies agreed with the government’s Committee on Climate Change advisory body that new build standards should be tightened hastily.

“We therefore call on the government to signal as soon as possible that by 2030 all new buildings should be ‘net zero carbon’, which means reducing all energy use as far as technically possible, with remaining demand met through renewables.”

UKGBC chief executive Julie Hirigoyen said property companies needed certainty.

“Time and again UKGBC members tell me they are looking to government to provide policy certainty in order to drive investment and catalyse innovation,” she said.

“We have not seen changes to building regulations since 2014, and the scrapping of the zero carbon policy in 2015 was both confusing and unnecessary.”

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