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April 2008

Fifteen provisional eco town locations announced
Fifteen provisional eco town locations have been announced by Housing Minister Caroline Flint today, although the intending schemes will have to pass a rigourous scrutiny of their environmental worthiness by a panel of experts before final acceptance. Flint said: "We have a major shortfall of housing and with... more
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Carbon targets could be missed says WWF green building report A new report by WWF-UK shows that without a radical shift in government policy the UK is set to miss out on the biggest opportunity to cut household energy bills, and reduce CO2 emissions. The first ever modelling of the country's entire housing stock shows that solid wall insulation and low and zero carbon technologies... more   back to top

New guide to more energy efficient historic buildings
Sustainable development charity Changeworks is publishing a new guide to improving energy efficiency in traditional and protected homes. This is part of a project called Energy Heritage, being run by Changeworks to identify acceptable ways of improving energy efficiency in such buildings. Some elements... more  back to top



A new framework for assessing sustainability of building materials
BRE Global, a division of BRE, who oversee the sustainability rating for buildings system BREEAM, intend to develop a new framework standard, to assess how sustainably construction products are supplied. BRE are inviting views on the standard which can be submitted by filling in a questionnaire available from the BRE website, this consultation process will continue until 2 May 2008.

An introduction to 'Responsible Sourcing of Materials' which also explains the intended process for developing and delivering Certification schemes against the standard can also be found on the website.

Responsible sourcing is an ethos of supply chain management and product stewardship and encompasses the social, economic and environmental impacts of construction products over their whole life. It is a holistic approach to managing all the activities of a material from the point at which it is mined or harvested in its raw state, through manufacture and processing, to use, reuse and recycling, until its final disposal as waste with no further value.

Responsible sourcing addresses aspects such as stakeholder engagement, labour practices and the environmental stewardship shown by the supply chains serving the different materials sectors upstream of the manufacturer.

Product stewardship is demonstrated by continued engagement with the use of the product beyond the factory gate and a commitment to improving the lifecycle performance.

BRE says its 'mission is to develop a Responsibly Sourced Materials certification scheme which will have at its core a standard that provides a generic framework of common principles that define responsible sourcing'.

'The framework will incorporate existing certification schemes and other industry initiatives to avoid adding additional administrative burdens of auditing and verification. It will provide a basis for addressing the Responsible Sourcing of Materials at both sector and company levels'.

The final goal is to allow industry to be recognised for its sustainability endeavours; give a certifiable framework for progress and produce meaningful messages for stakeholders and specifiers alike.

To take part in the consultation process, visit BRE here...
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16 million UK residents offered insulation
A total of 16 million homeowners and private tenants across the UK will have been contacted by the Heat Project by end of May 2008. The scheme's direct mail campaign has aimed to increase the take up of available grant funding for increased home energy efficiency. The large scale mailing is a result of increased funding by utility... more
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Renewable power on the horizon for BT
Wind turbines will be an increasingly frequent sight on the London skyline as planning regulations become more renewable energy-friendly, and BT have set the ball rolling in Southwark by installing one of central London’s biggest renewable energy projects so far. BT's installation will mark the beginning of Spring - the company... more   back to top

Eco town judging panel announced
The government's panel of green building 'experts', who will be called on to advise on the environmental credentials of the proposed eco towns have been named. TV presenters, environmentalists and planning experts have all been included in the advisory body. Their job will be to assess the various proposals put forward by intending... more
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Scotland's first eco pub
Scottish people are being encouraged to do their bit for the environment – by going for a pint. The Waterside Pub Partnership has invested £2m, the largest sum spent on a public house in Scotland, on building the country’s first “eco-pub” in Auchinstarry on the Forth and Clyde Canal. Due to open in two weeks... more   back to top 

Act on CO2 advice line launched
The government is providing the Energy Saving Trust with more than £100 million over the next three years to deliver a broader programme for green homes. And to make it as easy as possible for people to make their homes greener Energy Secretary Hilary Benn has launched the Act on CO2 Advice Line. Anyone in England can call... more
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Report queries whether eco homes will sell
Homeowners are not informed or prepared for the lifestyle changes needed to live in zero carbon homes, according to research launched today by the NHBC Foundation The report, Zero carbon: what does it mean for homeowners and housebuilders? identifies the attitudes of homeowners and builders towards the 2016 zero carbon agenda and the... more   back to top



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Forthcoming Events

Edinburgh 2nd May 2008
Energy Efficiency in Traditional and Protected Homes
Improving the energy efficiency of historic homes can be a complicated process. This free one-day conference will cover the issues surrounding energy efficiency in historic homes, and demonstrate how they can be made more efficient while retaining their historic integrity. A case study of the Energy Heritage pilot study will be presented, covering a range of measures and householders’ experiences.
More information on the Changeworks website here...

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