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Evidence for the All Party Parliamentary Group for Excellence in the Built Environment Inquiry into Sustainable Construction and the Green Deal

Listed author(s):
  • Mr Derek Bond
  • Professor Elaine Ramsey
  • Mr Stuart Thompson

The paper has been prepared on behalf of the ERDF INTERREG IVB transnational NPP funded NEES (Natural - Energy Efficient - Sustainable) project. The NEES consortium is concerned with the issues relating to sustainable construction and energy efficiency in the northern periphery of Europe. This submission decribes a number of best practice examples and barriers identified by NEES partners within their own regions. The barriers include - • Geographical dispersion of the sustainable building industries hinders the sharing of knowledge, expertise and contacts; • Lack of maintenance of the physical, intellectual and educational sustainable building infrastructures; • Serious deficiency in traditional and sustainable building skills poses serious problems for maintenance, retro-fitting and new build; • Lack of conclusive data makes it difficult to accurately compare the whole life carbon costs of different materials; • High levels of both physical and human capital have been invested in energy intensive construction methods which has resulted in little interest in sustainable alternatives. This submission makes a number of suggestions to help alleviate the barriers identified - • Fund the development of regional knowledge exchange hubs to help manage support for the sustainable construction industries; • Encourage new education initiatives and awareness raising activities around both the benefits of using sustainable materials and the demand for skilled employees; • Update building regulations to place a higher emphasis on sustainability in conjunction with energy efficiency; • Develop the supply of locally-sourced sustainable materials and encourage consumers to select them so as to minimise the (potentially significant) carbon costs of transportation.

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Paper provided by Ulster Business School in its series Accounting, Finance and Economics Research Group - Consultation Papers with number 2.

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Date of creation: Jan 2013
Handle: RePEc:fsr:consul:2
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