Low Carbon Homes Derbyshire

23 September 2020

Press Release

Issued by the University of Derby; Wednesday 23 September

University and councils team up to help Derbyshire firms create ‘net zero’ homes

The University of Derby is joining local partners from across Derbyshire next month to spearhead the ‘green recovery’ by making homes in the county more energy efficient.

Methods and approaches to ‘retrofit’ energy efficiency features in houses across Derbyshire will be the focus of an online Low Carbon Homes conference running over three mornings from 6-8 October, which is being supported by the University alongside Derbyshire County Council, Chesterfield Borough Council and South Derbyshire District Council.

The free conference is aimed at local housing associations, developers, suppliers, installers, house builders and community organisations in the D2N2 region.

The event follows the government’s recent pledge of £50 million for local councils to carry out retrofitting work, as well as a list of recommendations made by the UK Citizen’s Assembly for Climate Change for finding local solutions to the challenge.

The goal is to make Derbyshire a ‘net zero’ area in terms of its carbon emissions ahead of the government’s 2050 target.

Dr Fred Paterson, Associate Professor for Sustainable Business at the University’s Business School, will chair the conference.

He said: “As a University with a strong civic commitment to our city and county, we are very pleased to be working closely with our local authority partners to respond to the climate emergency.

“To create a net-zero Derbyshire by 2050, we need to radically shift the energy efficiency of our homes. Domestic buildings in Derbyshire are responsible for 27% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the county and 9,000 homes need ‘deep retrofitting’ every year for the next three decades.

“That’s 179 homes per week for the next 30 years, so the time for action is now.

“This event provides an invaluable springboard for stakeholders across the region to take action on this important climate change solution.”

The event will focus on best practice in housing energy efficiency retrofit from around the country, looking at benefits, available technology and funding, skills and training, and community engagement.

Dr Paterson added: “This online housing retrofit conference aims to build better understanding of the local ‘net zero’ challenge and our responsibilities for action.

“It will create a platform for genuine collaboration that will support citizens, construction firms, architects, planners, housing associations, educators and public servants to ensure Derbyshire is a thriving, healthy and sustainable place to live in the second half of this century.” To book a place at the conference, visit https://www.lowcarbonhomes.uk/events/

For more information about Sustainable Business and Clean Growth Research at the University of Derby, visit our website www.derby.ac.uk

The University of Derby also works with local councils to provide the DE-Carbonise Project for business, and supports the Low Carbon Business Network.

For more information about these schemes, please click on the links below: https//:www.derby.ac.uk/decarbonise www.lowcarbonbusiness.net

ENDS

Notes to editors

The UK Govt. has announced £50 million retrofit funding for local authorities: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/social-housing-decarbonisation-fund-demonstrator/social-housing-decarbonisation-fund-demonstrator-programme-overview

The conclusions of the UK Citizens’ Assembly for Climate Change – on net zero housing can be found here: https://www.carbonbrief.org/qa-how-the-climate-assembly-says-the-uk-should-reach-net-zero. The report emphasises:

“a focus on tailored solutions and choice – Favouring more locally based solutions and more players in the energy market, rather than a sort of top-down, national-level…solution”

19 housing policy measures should be part of how the UK gets to net-zero – [Government to review as part of CCA next months audit review]

o Support for smaller organisations to offer energy services (94%);

o Simpler consumer protection measures (92%);

o Changes to product standards to make products more energy efficient and ‘smart’ (91%);

o Local plans for zero carbon homes (89%);

o A ban on sales of new gas boilers from 2030 or 2035 (86%)

o Changes to energy market rules to allow more companies to compete (86%);

o Changes to VAT on energy efficiency and zero carbon heating products (83%);

o Information and support funded by government (83%), or information and support provided by government (72%);

o Government help for everyone (69%), or government help for poorer households (68%);

o Enforcing district heating networks (66%).

Summary of the report – Page 16/17: https://www.climateassembly.uk/report/read/final-report-exec-summary.pdf

Full report (issued 10 September 2020): https://www.climateassembly.uk/report/

Further reading: https://www.carbonbrief.org/qa-how-the-climate-assembly-says-the-uk-should-reach-net-zero

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