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Government proposes tighter energy standards for existing homes

The government has confirmed plans to ban gas boilers in new homes after 2025 and proposed tighter energy efficiency standards for existing housing.

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Gas boilers will be banned in new homes after 2025 (picture: Getty)
Gas boilers will be banned in new homes after 2025 (picture: Getty)

In its response to last year’s Future Homes Standard consultation, the government has said it intends to forge ahead with proposals to ban fossil fuel heating systems, such as gas boilers, in new build homes from 2025.

Instead the government anticipates that heat pumps will become the primary heating technology for new housing.

Homes built under the Future Homes Standard from 2025 are expected to produce 75% to 80% lower carbon emissions compared with current levels and will not require further retrofit work to become zero carbon as the electricity grid continues to decarbonise, the government said.

In addition to its response to the Future Homes Standard consultation, the government has also today published a Future Building Standards consultation, which addresses energy efficiency in existing homes.


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Proposals include the requirement that replacement parts be more energy efficient, including the replacement of windows and building services such as heat pumps, cooling systems or fixed lighting.

The consultation will be open for responses until 13 April.

In 2019, the UK government introduced a legally binding target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.

Heating and powering buildings currently accounts for 40% of the UK’s total energy usage.

Recent research by Inside Housing estimated that it will cost £104bn for all social homes in the UK to be retrofitted to net-zero standards.

Making today’s announcements, housing minister Christopher Pincher said: “Improving the energy performance of buildings is vital to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and protecting the environment for future generations to come.

“The radical new standards announced today will not only improve energy efficiency of existing homes and other buildings but will also ensure our new homes are fit for the future, by reducing emissions from new homes by at least 75%.

“This will help deliver greener homes and buildings, as well as reducing energy bills for hard-working families and businesses.”

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