We're supporting Part Z!
24 August 2021
If the UK is to address the climate change crisis and meet the urgent need to achieve net zero carbon emissions, building regulations need to change.
The proposed Building Regulations amendment ‘Part Z’ and Approved Document Z outlines requirements on the assessment of whole life carbon emissions, and limiting of embodied carbon emissions, for all major building projects.
The proposal introduces mandatory assessments ahead of setting carbon limits, giving time to converge on robust yet ambitious targets.
The Approved Document Z is aligned with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Professional Statement ‘Whole life carbon assessment for the built environment’, and guidance and recommendations made by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE), the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) and the London Energy Transformation Initiative (LETI).
If adopted, it would rapidly accelerate the voluntary action occurring across our industry, leading to green investment and green jobs creation across construction.
The need to introduce carbon regulation is supported by industry leaders, called for by the Climate Change Committee. It is hoped that Part Z will be seen as an ‘easy win’ for the UK’s roadmap to Net Zero.
"Max Fordham are strongly in favour of incorporating embodied carbon limits into the building regulations for new build and major refurbishments.
Under current regulation, design and building practices, the embodied CO2 emissions associated with constructing a building are vast, typically 5 times more than the CO2 emissions associated with running a low energy building for 50 years. This has to change if the UK is to address the climate change crisis and meet the urgent need to achieve net zero carbon emissions. Incorporating embodied carbon limits into building regulations can yield carbon reduction benefits in several ways including:
a) designers will need to use materials more efficiently,
b) designers will need to favour the use of low embodied carbon materials, and
c) material manufacturers will need to accelerate the decarbonisation of their processes." - David Lindsey, Senior Partner and London Office Leader at Max Fordham LLP