Offices Need to Cut Energy Use by 60% for Net Zero

OFFICES MUST CUT ENERGY USE by 60% according to the UK Green Building Council if they are to achieve net zero carbon by 2050.

The recommendation comes from a report, with the target developed as an addition to UKGBC’s 2019 report ‘Net Zero Carbon Buildings: A Framework Definition’, which sets out guidance for buildings seeking to achieve net zero for construction and operational energy.

Offices seeking zero carbon for operational energy should first meet the energy performance targets, then meet demand as far as possible through renewable energy and finally offset any remaining carbon.

Richard Twinn, Senior Policy Advisor at UKGBC said, “At the start of the decade of action, the most important action that the building sector can take is to drive down energy demand. This will be crucial to decarbonising our energy systems in the most cost-effective way, and ensuring that buildings only use their ‘fair share’ of energy in a net zero carbon economy.

“The net zero carbon buildings framework was introduced to bring consistency about what net zero carbon means in practice. The industry is already starting to use the framework to meet net zero, but these targets will begin to raise the bar for offices, placing much greater emphasis on energy efficiency before renewable energy and offsets. They will challenge the offices sector and show the way towards buildings that are truly fit for 2050.”

Target of 2035

A short paper setting out the details includes interim targets starting from current best practice, tightening every five years with the aim of hitting the target 15 years early, in 2035.

To allow for flexibility, the targets are expressed in kWhₑ/m2/year alongside equivalent DEC and NABERS UK ratings.

The work has been made possible thanks to the generous support of the Advancing Net Zero programme lead partner: Redevco Foundation; and programme partners: BAM Construct UK, Berkeley Group, Grosvenor Britain & Ireland, JLL UK and Hoare Lea.

The energy performance targets have been developed in collaboration with: Better Buildings Partnership (BBP), British Property Federation (BPF), Verco; with contributions from: Arup, Carbon Intelligence, JLL UK and TfL.

The targets and more information can be found here
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