Building regulations - proposed changes to energy standards, etc: consultation analysis

An analysis of the responses to the 2021 public consultation on a review of building standards relating to energy standards and associated topics, including ventilation, overheating and electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

1 Introduction

Scottish building regulations set minimum standards applicable to new buildings and to new work to existing buildings.

The Scottish Government’s ‘Heat in Buildings Strategy’ (2021)[2] sets out its vision for decarbonising heat and reducing energy demand across all buildings in Scotland, setting out the scale of the investment opportunity and supporting our green recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Reviews of the energy standards within building regulations undertaken in 2002, 2007, 2010 and most recently in October 2015 has resulted in a stepped reduction in carbon emissions associated with the use of new buildings.

This consultation sought to deliver further improvement to the energy efficiency of new buildings and new building work, in line with the Scottish Government’s wider net zero ambitions.

It considered changes to the energy standards that will further improve the energy performance of all new buildings. Proposals (for mid-2022) also addressed consequential changes to ventilation provision arising from improved energy standards, set out plans for assessment and mitigation of overheating risk in new dwellings and residential buildings, improved compliance with energy standards and sought views on separate proposals (for later implementation) for electric vehicle charging provision in new buildings and those subject to major renovation.

Seven draft guidance documents were issued in support of the consultation which were available for download via links in the consultation document or on the consultation webpage.

The consultation opened on 26th July 2021 and closed on 28th November 2021. The consultation was originally due to close on 29th October 2021, but the deadline was extended in response to requests from key stakeholders.

The consultation paper included 79 questions, the majority of which were closed questions. Respondents were also asked to add commentary to provide context to their answers. There was no word or page limit, enabling respondents to provide as much detail as they chose. Harlow Consulting was commissioned to independently analyse all of the responses to the consultation.



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