New Build Heat Standard 2024: equality impact assessment

Equality impact assessment (EQIA) considering the New Build Heat Standard (NBHS) proposals and implications of moving away from direct emissions heating systems in new buildings. Considering in detail the impacts and potential for increasing equality as a result of introducing these regulations.

Stage 1: Framing

Results of framing exercise

This Equality Impact Assessment record has been completed on the basis that the answer to the following two questions is ‘yes’:

  • Will your policy affect people, or will your policy impact on another policy that affects people? Yes, as the policy will impact on which heating systems are available with new buildings from 1 April 2024 onwards.
  • Will individuals have access to, or be denied access to a service or function as a result of your policy or the changes you propose to make? Yes, the NBHS will prohibit the use of direct emissions heating systems in new buildings.

Extent/Level of EQIA required

Initial data gathering was undertaken by analytical colleagues within the Scottish Government’s Office of the Chief Economic Adviser (OCEA). This included the use of the Scottish Government’s Equality Evidence Finder[2], as well as the various sources highlighted within Stage 2 below.

As demonstrated at Stage 2, there is, however, a lack of data/ evidence specifically relating to new buildings – with the majority of findings focussed around Scotland’s existing building stock. The most relevant findings have been extracted and included below for consideration.

In an effort to address the availability of relevant data, during the second consultation on the NBHS (the ‘Part II’ consultation[3]), the Scottish Government asked the following equality-related questions:

  • How might these proposals impact upon people with one or more of the protected characteristics listed in the Equality Act 2010 (for example: a positive, negative or neutral impact)?
  • How might these proposals help the Scottish Government ensure due regard of the three needs of the public sector equality duty(PSED)?

These questions were drafted with input from OCEA and the Equality Policy and Mainstreaming team.

In addition, a consumers/ equality themed hybrid workshop was held in Atlantic Quay, Glasgow, on 27 September 2022. As part of the webinar breakout session, participants were also asked the consultation questions mentioned above.

In an effort to ensure participation from key equality stakeholders groups, direct contact was made (via email) with the following organisations:

Category Number of organisations approached Consultation response received
Age 15 0
Disability 12 0
Race 5 0
Religion and Belief 6 0
Sex 5 1
Sexual Orientation 4 0
Gender Reassignment 2 0
Pregnancy and Maternity 1 0
Other 1 0

The data and findings presented within this EQIA are proportionate to the level of impact this policy will have.



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