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BREEAM Domestic refurbishment

The BDR standard consists of a number of categories other than CO2 and energy performance, within the energy category there are also points awarded for the inclusion of energy saving measures; such as sub-metering of energy systems, multiple thermostats etc. However, the standard also grants points for 2 issues relating to EPC performance. Firstly, it awards points for the actual EER rating, secondly it awards points for improvement of EER rating from the pre-retrofit situation. Figure 1shows the range of improvements in all BDR projects to date, that have met an EPC EER rating of B (SAP 81) and above; a total of 150 EPCs(BRE, 2015). The figure shows that the majority of these BDR projects have seen an extremely significant improvement in the EER rating post-retrofit.


Figure 1  BDR EER data for all at B and above  (BRE, 2015)

Code for Sustainable homes (CfSH)

As described in a previous article in this series, many local authorities have mandated minimum performance in the CfSH as part of their local plans and residential development policies. Many had adopted a requirement from 2010-2012 for a minimum performance. Major developments; constituting 10 or more homes, should achieve Code 3 and Code 4 from 2013-2015, representing a 25% then 40% improvement in CO2 performance, when compared to building regulations (Camden, 2015)

As shown in Figure 16 the vast majority of completed PCS Code certificates have been granted at levels 3 and 4 and are therefore likely to have been driven by local authority planning requirements.


Figure 2 Cumulative PCS CfSH certificates issued as of Dec’14 (DCLG, 2015)

It can be seen from Figure 2that thus far the CfSH has had a relatively minimal impact of the penetration of ‘zero carbon homes’, i.e. those at Codes 5 and 6[1]. However as outlined in local development plans, the mandating of increased performance against the CfSH, had been introduced to encourage a gradual step change towards the 2016 ZC target (DCLG, 2006) As can be seen in Figure 17 there has been no clear observable trend in the number of projects built to Code 5 and 6, since the launch of the EPC scheme in 2008. These projects represented 13% of the total EER ‘A’ rated new dwellings from 2008-2014 (DECC, 2015).


Figure 3 Annual totals of Post Construction Stage (PCS) CfSH assessments, achieving code 5 and 6 ratings  (DCLG, 2015)

The total number of both retrofit and new build projects built across these standards is summarised in Table 1.

Table 1 Cumulative projects built to major low carbon standards across the UKStandardNew BuildRetrofitRetrofit for the Future –118Superhomes–217Enerphit–8BDR (EPC B)–150AECB Silver662AECB Gold1–Passivhaus (residential)2293Code 5 627–Code 6306–Total1229498


BRE 2015. BREEAM Domesic Refirbishment (BDR) Energy Data. Building Research Establishment: Chris Ward.

CAMDEN 2015. Camden Planning Guidance 3 Sustainabilty. In: CAMDEN, L. B. O. (ed.). London.

DCLG 2006. Building A Greener Future: Towards Zero Carbon Development – Consultation. In: GOVERNMENT, D. F. C. A. L. (ed.). London.

DCLG 2015. Code for Sustainable Homes Statistics: number of certificates issued in month by stage of construction in England, Wales and Northern Ireland from March 2008. Department for Communities and Local Government.

DECC 2015. NB1 – Number of New Dwelling Energy Performance Certificates lodged on the Register in England & Wales by Energy Efficiency Rating – in each Year/Quarter to 30/06/2015. London: Department of Energy and Climate Change.

[1] However it should be considered that as shown in Figure 6 some Code 4 properties could still achieve an EER A rating

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