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Code for Sustainable Homes

"We have to cut carbon emissions from homes.  About a third of the homes that we'll be living in by 2050 have not yet been built. We want a star rating to tell people just how well the new homes are doing". Yvette Cooper Minister for Housing 2005-7

Communities and Local Government (CLG) launched the Code for Sustainable Homes as part of a package of measures aimed at reducing UK carbon emissions and environmental impact.

The Code for Sustainable Homes is a non-mandatory rating scheme for new build housing in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Sustainability is measured against nine categories and star rated from one to six according to the impact they have on the environment, six having the lowest level of impact and zero net carbon emissions.

Each level of the Code specifies minimum standards for energy/CO2, water, materials, surface water runoff (flooding and flood prevention), waste, pollution, health and well-being, management and ecology.

  CO² Emissions Indoor Water Consumption Relationship between total percentage points score and code level
Code Level Minimum % improvement in dwelling emission rate over target emission rate than Part L 2010 Maximum Indoor Water Consumption in Litres per Person per Day Points
1(*) 0% 120 36
2(**) 0% 120 48
3(***) 0% 105 57
4(****) 23% 105 68
5(*****) 100% 80 84
6(******) Net Zero CO² 80 90

In April 2007, the Code for Sustainable Homes replaced the BRE’s EcoHomes standard for the assessment of new housing in England. EcoHomes 2006 will continue to be used for refurbished housing in England and for all housing in Scotland and Wales.

April 2008

Three star rating becomes mandatory for new social-housing developments or developments on state controlled land

May 2008

All new homes to be measured and given a star rating*

2010

All new homes to achieve a three star rating (minimum)

2013

All new homes to achieve a four star rating (minimum)

2016

All new homes to achieve a six star rating (zero carbon)

*If the builder has submitted a building notice, a full plans application or an initial notice for the purposes of building regulations before 1st May 2008, there is no mandatory requirement for a Star Rating.

Related documents:

Building a Greener Future (Consultation) December 2006
Planning Policy Statement “Planning and Climate Change” December 2006

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