Ecocem questions UK Government's CO2 regulations for new homes and buildings

Ecocem questions UK Government's CO2 regulations for new homes and buildings
14 June 2022

Ecocem has questioned whether the new UK Government regulations (15 June 2022) for new homes and buildings in England to produce significantly less CO2 go far enough? Ecocem advises that embodied carbon, meaning the CO2 emissions released over the whole lifecycle of a building, should be adopted alongside carbon emissions for building materials.

According to the World Green Building Council, buildings are responsible for 39 per cent of global carbon related emissions, with a significant 11 per cent of that coming from materials and construction. But the new regulations only focus on heating and powering buildings, says Ecocem.

The cement industry is tasked with reaching Net Zero Emissions by 2050 but direct CO2 intensity of cement production increased 1.8 per cent per year during 2015-2020 (IEA data).

Conor O’Riain from Ecocem, Europe’s leading provider of low carbon technology for the cement and construction industries, comments: “Delivering the UK’s, and the world’s, climate change goals demand an ambitious approach. There is a big problem in the construction industry that is not talked about enough – embodied carbon. Our public buildings and housing have already produced huge quantities of emissions during their construction – well before we move in and turn on the lights.

“Traditional cement is a major contributor to embodied carbon. We, as an industry, must come together to and set ourselves new targets for significantly reducing CO2 emissions. Low-carbon technology, which can reduce the carbon footprint of cement by 70 per cent at scale, is available today. However, a lack of sector-wide standards on cement production and ultimate use is impacting efforts to deploy and adopt these low carbon solutions at speed.

Without action to tackle the problem of embodied carbon, alongside these new regulations limiting carbon emissions from new developments, decarbonising the construction sector is simply unachievable.”

Published under Cement News