THE Government has said it will ban the use of gas boilers from new homes by 2025 as part of an ‘environmental revolution’ in the construction of housing.
The Future Homes Standard, unveiled by housing secretary Robert Jenrick MP, sets out to replace such fossil fuel heating systems with renewable energy sources such as ground source heat pumps and solar panels.
According to the Ministry for Housing, Communities & Local Government (MHCLG), ministers will also consult on a new blueprint to overhaul the planning system intended to create a “simpler, fairer system that works for everyone – from homeowners to small and medium businesses, local communities to housing developers”.
The Government has also announced plans for a new national design code that will ensure developers build “beautiful, well designed homes that people are proud to live in”.
“Building new homes isn’t just about bricks and mortar, I want to ensure everyone – including developers – do their bit to protect the environment and give the next generation beautiful, environmentally friendly homes that local communities can support,” Jenrick said.
“That’s why I am requiring carbon emissions are cut by up to 80% from 2025 for all new homes and have published a National Design Guide, setting out simply what we expect from new development.
“We are also reforming the planning system making it faster and more efficient for everyone, from households to large developers, alongside giving families greater freedom to extend their homes to meet their changing needs.”
The Government has launched a consultation on stronger building regulations that it says will pave the way for the Future Homes Standard.
The 2020 changes aim to improve the environment by cutting carbon emissions in new homes by almost a third, while keeping bills low.
Using new technologies such as air source heat pumps and the latest generation of solar panels, MHCLG said that developers will need to ensure they are doing their bit to tackle the threat of climate change.
The Government has also confirmed proposals to speed up the planning system, including the potential for more fees to be refunded if councils take too long to decide on specific planning applications.
The move is expected to benefit all planning applicants, from housing developers to individual householders seeking to extend or modify their own home, as it ensures councils work at pace to decide proposals.
Furthermore, MHCLG says it means local residents will no longer have to contend with a “complicated and outdated planning system”, but a more user-friendly approach designed to simply the process. Small developers will similarly benefit from the simplification of guidance, with the introduction of a new tiered planning system.
Meanwhile, the first-ever government-backed National Model Design Code will be published in the New Year, which will set out a clear model for promoting a better design and style of homes across the country, shaped by what local people want.
A new National Design Guide has also been published today, setting out a blueprint for how local authorities can achieve quality and great design, and recommends what developers need to deliver to help win the support of communities – ensuring new homes are built quicker and better.
The document also asks councils to prepare and implement their own design codes, in line with the national standard, which can reflect their unique setting and character.