The West Midlands is set to see accelerated construction of low carbon, energy efficient homes following the recent launch of a taskforce featuring some of the UK’s top property experts.
The Zero Carbon Homes Taskforce is to support the region in its bid to tackle climate change, having been installed by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA). The aim is to ensure that, from 2025 onwards, all new homes in the region comply with tough zero carbon standards.
The region has set itself an ambitious target of being carbon neutral by 2041, and the taskforce has been given the role of bringing local and expert insight to help build towards a net zero future.
Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands and chair of the WMCA, said: “Housebuilding has been one of the West Midlands’ best success stories in recent years, with record numbers of homes being built and the vast majority of them on brownfield land.
“Now, not only must we look to continue that success in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, but we must also think more about how housebuilding can help tackle the climate emergency we are facing and help the region reach its net-zero goal of 2041.
“This new taskforce will help do exactly that, building on work which is already underway to understand our existing performance and what more needs to be done.”
The taskforce includes representatives from across a number of sectors including finance, academia, construction, innovation and energy, and will be chaired by Julie Hirigoyen, chief executive of the UK Green Building Council.
She said: “We have secured a multi-disciplinary and highly experienced group of representatives from business, local government and academia, all of whom I am confident will play a critical role in ensuring that WMCA adopts an ambitious and impactful approach to delivering zero carbon homes closely aligned with UKGBC’s own framework definition for net zero carbon buildings.
“The Taskforce will inform the development of a charter and a roadmap for zero carbon homes that WMCA has a direct stake in, but importantly it should also set an example for other local authorities in the region to follow. This is a unique opportunity to bring the public and private sectors together to build back better by delivering homes fit for the future.”
Regular meetings will be held between members of the taskforce over the coming months as they look to develop a charter and roadmap to help guide the region towards zero carbon and build consensus across major public and private sector organisations.