Infrastructure Carbon Offsetting In Legislative Agenda

Plans to include carbon offsetting for new housing developments have been announced by the Liberal Democrat party ahead of the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday, the BBC reports.

The proposals will allow developers to offset any carbon emissions remaining from houses once they have been built with energy-efficient and carbon-reducing materials and technologies. This will enable them to meet regulatory obligations requiring that all new homes have ‘no net emissions’ from 2016 as the forthcoming ‘Zero Carbon Homes’ standards are expected to necessitate. The plans, described as “flexible and cost-effective”, are set to be included as part of the Infrastructure Bill in Wednesday’s Queen’s Speech. Amid concerns from Conservative quarters of new ‘regulatory burdens’ on construction companies the Government has also recently moved to integrate the Code for Sustainable Homes into national Building Regulations, watering down the minimum level builders are expected to reach from Level 5 to Level 4 of the Code and threatening its commitment to keep its ‘Zero Carbon Home’ aspiration (only obtained at Level 5). The Liberal Democrats have however been quick to use these plans to highlight their role in Government with one party source being quoted as saying: “This legislation will help cut rising energy bills and help tackle climate change at the same time…This simply would not be happening without the Lib Dems in government”.

Read the full BBC article