The Code for Sustainable Homes (CSH) is based on EcoHomes with BRE and DCLG having worked closely together to ensure the new assessment method meets the latest regulatory requirements and addresses the issues that emerged from an earlier industry wide consultation.
The Code will replace EcoHomes for new homes in England from 1st April 2007 and will run as a fully functional scheme with a network of Licensed Assessors ready to provide Code certification from Spring next year.
Martin Wyatt (BRE Chief Executive) said, ‘This move clearly demonstrates the Government’s intention to tackle the environmental impacts of new construction. BRE is delighted that its EcoHomes system has been used as the basis of the Government’s new Code and we are sure that our existing assessor network of UKAS accredited competent people will rise to the challenge of delivering the Code.’
Many house builders currently using EcoHomes will find the Code very familiar, however there are differences, the main one being new mandatory levels of performance across six key areas - energy efficiency, water efficiency, surface water management, site waste management, household waste management, and use of materials.
Under the Code compliance should be reviewed at the design stage, and final certification carried out upon completion of construction (under EcoHomes most homes are certified at the Design Stage). New points for Lifetime Homes, Security and Zero Carbon Technologies have been added and only the EcoHomes transport credits have been omitted.
BRE will be holding a number of free events in the New Year to explain the Code and details of these can be found at www.bre.co.uk/events
EcoHomes and EcoHomes XB will continue to be used to assess refurbished and existing homes in England and new homes in Scotland and Wales where the Code does not apply. All the BREEAM schemes for non-domestic buildings versions will be updated and launched in the early summer of 2007 as usual.