UK's Housing Energy Efficiency at Risk- RIBA's Response to Government Policy Changes

Prime Minister’s Green Policy Shift

On 20 September 2023, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak introduced plans to scale back key environmental policies. This announcement has sparked concern among professionals in the built environment, as it signals a potential decrease in commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions.

Response from RIBA

In response to the Prime Minister’s announcement, RIBA President Muyiwa Oki voiced his concerns. He pointed out that the built environment is the UK’s second highest carbon emitting sector, and the government’s lack of intention to lead the charge towards net zero is worrying. He also highlighted the potential consequences for future generations.

Energy Inefficiency of UK Homes

According to Oki, millions of people in the UK are living in draughty, damp homes that are leaking energy and money. He stated that the government’s recent policy changes reverse any progress made on upgrading the country’s ageing and inefficient housing stock.

Comparison with European Standards

Oki further noted that without consistent government signalling, policy, and investment, UK homes will remain the least efficient in Europe for years. His comments highlight the country’s urgent need for decisive action and strong leadership in tackling this issue.

Call for Leadership and Ambition

In concluding his response, the RIBA President called for leadership and ambition from the government. He stressed that urgent action is necessary to prevent the UK’s homes from continuing to be the least energy efficient in Europe.

Related News and Developments

You might also be interested in other relevant news in the built environment sector. For instance, BCO Awards 2023: Showcasing Superior Workplace Design in the UK and the UK Economy Faces Uncertainty as Government Cancels HS2 Northern Leg. These articles provide valuable insight into the ongoing discussions and initiatives in the UK’s built environment.

The Echoing Silence on Energy Efficiency

As the UK grapples with the challenge of transitioning to a net zero future, the energy efficiency of its housing stock remains a critical issue. The government’s shift in green policy poses questions on the nation’s path towards this goal, underlining the role of leadership and policy in shaping a sustainable built environment.