Blogging site produced by TJW Media for Energy Saving Trust - Retrofit for the Future Diaries
About Retrofit for the Future: The Climate Change Act (2008) requires that by 2050, the UK’s annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions should be reduced by 80% compared to 1990 levels. Home energy use is responsible for over a quarter of UK CO2 emissions which contribute to climate change. We must therefore aim to reduce CO2 emissions from all dwellings by an average of 80% to help meet the UK’s long term goal.
About Retrofit for the Future: The Climate Change Act (2008) requires that by 2050, the UK’s annual carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions should be reduced by 80% compared to 1990 levels. Home energy use is responsible for over a quarter of UK CO2 emissions which contribute to climate change. We must therefore aim to reduce CO2 emissions from all dwellings by an average of 80% to help meet the UK’s long term goal.The challenge is to develop methods to refurbish UK housing stock to help meet the UK Government target reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and energy use.In March 2009, the Technology Strategy Board launched an SBRI initiative ‘Retrofit for the Future’ under the Low Impact Building Innovation Platform principally to address this challenge in social housing.‘Retrofit for the Future’ is the first programme of its kind in the UK, and will see social housing units across the country retrofitted with new, innovative technologies to test low carbon building technology.Understanding and implementing best practice retrofitting is key to meeting the government’s CO2 reduction target of 80% by 2050. The results of the projects will be shared to help show how the UK’s current housing stock could be made more energy efficient.In the initial design phase, over 190 organisations – including housing associations, architects and construction companies – received up to £20,000 each to carry out full feasibility studies and devise innovative proposals. From these proposals, 86 have now been awarded development contracts to carry out retrofits on current social houses.It is intended that the principles established by Retrofit for the Future prototypes can be applied throughout the country and that social housing will continue to take a lead role in terms of energy reduction and CO2 mitigation.The retrofit prototypes will each receive an average of £142,000 to demonstrate deep cuts in carbon emissions and exemplar energy efficient measures in UK social housing. The level of funding is specifically designed to stimulate the implementation of innovative, proof of concept demonstrator houses that may offer cost effective solutions for wider role out across the UK. The Energy Saving Trust, a leading independent organisation set up to provide energy saving advice for the public, will work in partnership with each of the projects to collect data from each of the retrofitted houses, including internal and external temperature, humidity and CO2 levels. Each demonstrator house will be carefully evaluated by the Energy Saving Trust for at least 2 years. This data will then be assimilated to form a database which will be made available to researchers, social landlords and energy companies to ensure that the most cost effective technologies are employed in future retrofits and the potential for lower cost implementation in volume across the remaining UK social housing stock.