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How to achieve net zero carbon homes

Funded through the Local Government Association (LGA) Housing Advisers Programme, the guide has been produced by leading technical experts from Etude, the Passivhaus Trust, Levitt Bernstein and Elementa Consulting.

Who is the Toolkit for?

Pulling on latest guidance and best practice, the Net Zero Carbon Toolkit is a practical, easy to follow guide to help plan a net zero housing project.

Aimed at small or medium-sized house builders, architects, self-builders and consultants, the toolkit covers a range of steps – from pre-planning right through to construction – for delivering net-zero carbon, low-energy homes.

The toolkit also provides homeowners looking to retrofit or extend their existing property, guidance and advice on what they need to consider and how they can implement energy efficiency measures and begin the process of decarbonising their homes in a more affordable, phased approach.

Implementing the measures laid out in the new toolkit will help reduce the carbon footprint of new and existing buildings. Making significant reductions to a home’s carbon emissions also means lower energy bills for homeowners, more people out of fuel poverty and homes that are comfortable and healthier to live in.

How can others use the Toolkit?

West Oxfordshire District Council and its two partner councils share an ambition that net zero should be the standard for all new housing and retrofit projects in their districts.

Achieving the UK’s legally binding net zero target is no small task and it is acknowledged that reaching this goal requires organisations to work together, share experiences and build on best practice.

To help others reach net zero and to speed up the UK’s collective response to the climate emergency, the Net Zero Carbon Toolkit is openly available as a resource for private and public sector organisations to use and adopt. Further information about how the toolkit may be used is listed on page 2 of the document. 


Authors: Etude, Passivhaus TrustLevitt Bernstein and Elementa Consulting.

Publication date: July 2021

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Social Value Toolkit for Architecture

The Social Value Toolkit for Architecture has been developed to make it simple to evaluate and demonstrate the social impact of design on people and communities.

Social value outcomes are increasingly being considered necessary benefits in public and private procurement through quality scores of bids and tenders. To provide evidence that meets these key performance targets and metrics, practices need to demonstrate value quantitatively and this toolkit provides a post occupancy evaluation survey and methodology for reporting social value as a financial return on investment.

The Social Value Toolkit was developed through a research project led by the University of Reading and included representatives from the RIBA and research leaders in architectural practice. Download the guidance below to hear from some of these researchers on how their practice is building social value into their projects and design processes.


Author: RIBA

Publication date: June 2020

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Tool

Hotmaps

The overarching goal of Hotmaps is the development of an open source heating/cooling mapping and planning toolbox and to provide default data for EU28 at national and local level. These data and tool allow public authorities to identify, analyse, model and map resources and solutions to supply energy needs within their territory of responsibility in a resource and cost efficient way. Those results will help authorities to develop heating and cooling strategies on local, regional and national scale which are in line with RES and CO2-Emission targets on national and EU level.

www.hotmaps-project.eu

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Guidance Standard Tool

Assured Performance Process (APP)

What is the Assured Performance Process (APP)?

There is often a huge difference between how buildings are supposed to perform, and how they actually do.  The assured performance process provides independent and expert input to the development process to minimise this energy, overheating, and indoor air quality performance gap.  As well as helping to reduce carbon emissions and climate change, this improves the health of people using buildings.

The Assured Performance Process TM (APP) maps to the RIBA Plan of Work and has five stages of expert, impartial review and assessment. APP assessors are accredited by The National Energy Foundation for their expertise and they offer two services:

  • APP implementation across all five key stages – supporting the client throughout the development process. This is a bespoke service.
  • One off reviews tailored to the stage of the development

Who is behind APP?

The Good Homes Alliance has secured a two year license for the Assured Performance Process (APP) from the original developer and owner, the National Energy Foundation (NEF).

NEF is a charity which has been meeting its mission of “improving the use of energy in buildings” for more than 20 years.  NEF has established other nationally recognised quality systems.

Contact Julian Brooks at julian@goodhomes.org.uk to find out more.

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Guidance Tool

Right to Build Toolkit

The Right to Build toolkit has been developed by the Right to Build Task Force, a professional advice service, and part community-interest company, that supports a range of organisations in their ambitions to deliver more Custom- and Self-build homes in the UK. The Task Force is supported by a team of experts able to provide advice to help unlock the growing demand from people that want to build, or commission, their own home.

Although set up by the National Custom and Self Build Association (NaCSBA), the Task Force operates completely independently, with an ethical wall between the two organisations. This is because while NaCSBA lobbies government for change, the Right to Build Task Force is solely focused on providing advice to a range of stakeholders to bring on more owner-commissioned homes, including community-led homes, working within the framework of the Right to Build legislation.

Author: National Custom and Self Build Association (NaCSBA)

Further information: righttobuildtoolkit.org.uk.

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Guidance Tool

Overheating in New Homes

A new tool and accompanying guidance which aims to help planners and design teams identify and mitigate overheating risks in new homes at an early stage.

The tool and guidance were formally launched at a sold-out evening event on 16th July 2019 at Winckworth Sherwood in London, which featured short talks from the project team and steering group experts.

The work has been led by a project team of Susie Diamond (Inkling), Julie Godefroy (Julie Godefroy Sustainability) and Nicola O’Connor (Mandarin Research) with support and feedback from an expert steering group, the GHA team and stakeholder workshops.

The steering group has consisted of the following experts:

  • Lynne Sullivan OBE, Chair, Good Homes Alliance
  • Michael Swainson, BRE
  • Anastasia Mylona, CIBSE
  • Joe Baker, London Borough of Haringey
  • Guy Thompson, The Concrete Centre
  • Dr Victoria Tink, Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government
  • Chris Twinn, Twinn Sustainability Innovation
  • Tom Dollard, Pollard Thomas Edwards

To assist with the use and uptake of the tool, the GHA and the research project team will develop and deliver a number of training masterclasses starting in autumn 2019. If you’re interested in attending a GHA Masterclass on overheating or arranging a bespoke CPD for your organisation, please contact Julian Brooks at julian@goodhomes.org.uk.

Author: Good Homes Alliance

Publication date: July 2019

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Tool

SCATTER (Setting City Area Targets and Trajectories for Emissions Reduction)

SCATTER (Setting City Area Targets and Trajectories for Emissions Reduction) is a local authority focussed emissions tool, built to help create low carbon local authorities. SCATTER provides local authorities and city regions with the opportunity to standardise their greenhouse gas reporting and align to international frameworks, including the setting of targets in line with the Paris Climate Agreement.

  • SCATTER generates a compliant emissions inventory

  • SCATTER can be used to develop a credible decarbonisation pathway for a local authority to implement in line with their emissions targets.

  • Outputs can then be used for engagement to create a collaborative carbon reduction approach

Author: Anthesis Group

Launch date: March 2018

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