All new homes in Wales to be heated and powered from clean energy sources from 2025
Ambitious new proposals which would lead to all new homes in Wales being heated and powered only from clean energy sources from 2025, making them more energy efficient and cheaper to run, have been set out by the Welsh Government.
The consultation proposals unveiled by Housing Minister, Julie James, are part of wider Welsh Government plans to address the climate emergency it declared last year.
Later this year, ministers will bring forward legislation to adopt a 95% greenhouse gas reduction target, with an ambition to reach net zero in future.
Housing contributes significantly to climate change: new and existing homes currently account for 9% of Welsh greenhouse gas emissions.
If Wales is to meet its climate targets, buildings will need to operate at close to zero emissions by 2050. This will require a substantial change in how buildings are heated and powered in future. The amount of energy used in buildings will have to be significantly lower, while the remaining energy demand will need to be delivered through low carbon and renewable sources.
To address this, the Welsh Government is proposing the introduction of tough new standards on new homes, to be implemented in stages over the next 5 years.
The proposals include:
- Improved energy efficiency from 2020 which will lead to a 37% reduction in CO2 from new dwellings, compared with current standards, and save homeowners £180 a year on energy bills (based on a semi-detached home). In addition, all new homes will need to be future-proofed, to make it easier to retrofit low carbon heating systems
- Phasing out the use of high-carbon fossil fuels and moving to cleaner ways to heat our homes though the introduction of low carbon heating and energy generation, such as renewable energy sources (photovoltaic panels), heat pumps or district heat networks, which involve heating and hot water to multiple buildings from a central heat source
- Improving energy efficiency thorough introducing measures that limit heat loss and reduce the demand for heat, such as triple glazing and higher standard fabrics for walls, roofs, floors, and windows
- Improving air quality by ensuring the supply and removal of air to and from a space or spaces in a building provides good air quality. This will also help ensure people's physical well-being is maximised
- When the new building standards are implemented in full in 2025, homes should produce 75-80% less CO2 emissions than ones built to current requirements.
Housing Minister, Julie James yesterday said:
New and existing housing contribute about a fifth of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions. If we are to meet our ambitious target of reducing our greenhouse gas emissions by 95% by 2050, we need to take action now to make a significant step change to the way we heat and power our homes.
The new homes being built today will exist in 2050. Therefore, we must ensure the standards we set for these homes put us on the right path. This involves improving energy efficiency and moving to cleaner ways to heat our homes.
The proposed consultation, for implementation over the next 5 years, makes a strong and meaningful contribution to reducing the carbon and energy impact of new homes, while recognising our ambition needs to be balanced against the desire for standards to be cost-effective, affordable and practical.
These measures will not only help tackle climate change, but they will also help keep down household energy costs now and in the future - helping people, no matter what their background or circumstances, with the cost of living.
The consultation on the new proposals closes on the 12 March 2020.
The Welsh Government intends to consult separately on standards when building work is carried out in existing dwellings, and new and existing non-domestic buildings, with a view to uplifting the standards.
Latest News from
The Historic Environment sector in Wales addresses climate change challenges28/02/2020 14:05:00
An expert group has launched Wales’s Historic Environment and Climate Change in Wales Sector Adaptation Plan.
Cyber College Cymru coming online for new generation of digital talent28/02/2020 11:05:00
Leading companies and Welsh educators join forces in new route to tech careers.
Welsh stations miss out on UK government investment28/02/2020 09:05:00
The Welsh Government has expressed its disappointment after stations on the Wales & Borders network have missed out on UK government funding, describing it as “the UK government’s failure to deliver the investment they are responsible for.”
First Minister: UK government putting ideology above people’s livelihoods27/02/2020 16:05:00
First Minister Mark Drakeford today warned that the UK government’s go-it-alone approach to future trade with the EU will damage the Welsh economy in a rushed bid to get a deal.
Contract awarded for £29m A55 Tai’r Meibion scheme – as North Wales transport improvements continue27/02/2020 14:05:00
Work on the A55 Aber to Tai’r Meibion improvements is set to begin in late March, North Wales Minister Ken Skates will announce today (Thursday, 27 February).
Procurex Wales and GO Awards Wales – 3 weeks to go!27/02/2020 12:43:00
We are now only 3 weeks away from Procurex Wales and GO Awards Wales, taking place on 18 March in Cardiff.
Senior staffing changes27/02/2020 11:05:00
Following the recent departure of Jonathan Hopkins, Marcella Maxwell has been appointed interim Deputy Director of Commercial Procurement in the Welsh Government.
Launch of exciting new initiative to boost nature ‘on your doorstep’26/02/2020 14:10:00
The Welsh Government launches a major new scheme today (Wednesday 26 February) which aims to empower communities to bring nature ‘to your doorstep’ and help halt and reverse the decline in nature.
Final Budget 2020 to 202126/02/2020 13:10:00
Statement by Minister for Finance and Trefnydd, Rebecca Evans AM.