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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
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      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/may/16/uk-must-secure-billions-in-investment-to-meet-climate-targets-mps-warn
    "Funds going into renewable energy, the mainstay of the low-carbon economy, fell more than 50% in 2017, having dropped by 10% in 2016, bringing annual investment in the sector to its lowest since the financial crisis in 2008.

    The environmental audit committee (EAC) said on Wednesday that the government would be unable to meet its pledges on carbon emission reductions, if the collapse continued."
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Pledges to whom, the EU
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime3 days ago edited
     
    Posted By: SteamyTeaPledges to whom, the EU
    No, to UK's own 'world leading' (i.e. not EU diktat) Climate Change Act obligation (reduce emissions by at least 80% of 1990 levels by 2050). Didn't you know that?
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Irony Tom, irony.
  1.  
    Is this drop in government investment partially because renewables have become much cheaper and are therefore able to stand on their own feet?

    Over on one the other Green websites I routinely visit, Tree Hugger, it’s all good news about the U.K. with RE records being broken on a daily basis (days without coal, days where wind beats nuclear, solar generation) and talk about new UK offshore wind farms coming online over the next few years.

    It’d be interesting to know what the truth is and how far away we are from meeting our agreed CO2 targets.

    Edit: I did a quick google and found this:

    UK emissions were 42% below 1990 levels in 2016. The first carbon budget (2008-12) has been met and the UK is currently on track to outperform the second (2013-17) and third (2018-22) carbon budgets, but is not on track to meet the fourth, which covers the period 2023-27

    The article doesn’t state which targets the U.K. is going to miss, an odd omission given the strident headline. Perhaps this is more about an anti-Brexit message than an environmental one?
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Just for once, this doesn't have an anti-Brexit angle, as the obligation is UK home-grown (except govt inattention due to Brexit workload).

    Sorry ST, didn't (still don't) get the irony.

    Posted By: Pile-o-Stone... and the UK is currently on track to outperform the second (2013-17) and third (2018-22) carbon budgets, but is not on track to meet the fourth, which covers the period 2023-27
    Wish I'd taken notes at the seminar, but flaws in govt spin and cherrypicking about this were contrasted with 'facts'.
  2.  
    Posted By: fostertom
    Posted By: Pile-o-Stone... and the UK is currently on track to outperform the second (2013-17) and third (2018-22) carbon budgets, but is not on track to meet the fourth, which covers the period 2023-27
    Wish I'd taken notes at the seminar, but flaws in govt spin and cherrypicking about this were contrasted with 'facts'.


    Here is the source of the information you quoted. They say they're independent (so no government cherry picking or spin):

    https://www.theccc.org.uk/tackling-climate-change/reducing-carbon-emissions/how-the-uk-is-progressing/

    I dug a little further on that website and the reason we are not on track to meet the 2023-2027 targets are due to increased emissions from transport and buildings:

    "This report is the Committee on Climate Change’s ninth annual assessment of UK progress in reducing emissions and meeting carbon budgets.

    The report finds that:

    UK greenhouse gas emissions are about 42% lower than in 1990, around half way to the 2050 commitment to reduce emissions by at least 80% on 1990 levels although good progress has been made to date, that progress is stalling.

    Since 2012, emissions reductions have been largely confined to the power sector, whilst emissions from transport and building stock are rising. Effective new strategies and policies are urgently needed to ensure emissions continue to fall in line with the commitments agreed by Parliament"
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime3 days ago edited
     
    P-o-S, sorry I didn't take trouble to open the link you gave - and it looks like the same story, maybe same source, as what I was hearing about. Your last 2 paras is exactly it, and govt neatly spins and cherrypicks around those shortcomings, mainly by boasting about the Power sector as if that's all there is.

    Power has been successful, industry has also made great strides, and much more to come, but transport's got worse, despite early moves to electrification (which anyway depends on Power source), and buildings, shamefully, are too hot to handle because it means coercing the owner-occupier electorate.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Not read that link, but how much of it will be just the normal investment cycle that large companies make.
    Take EDF, they are investing in new nuclear, but it takes a while to build, 3 years, 5 years, by 2016 we will cook out Christmas lunch with it, 2020, 2022, 2050. Who knows when it will happen, but it will.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Posted By: fostertom[...] buildings, shamefully, are too hot to handle because it means coercing the owner-occupier electorate.
    I don't think that's the issue. It would be relatively easy to educate the owner-occupiers. The issue is money. Indeed, education is the last thing Government would want to do, because then they might begin to get some pressure put on them about the subject.
  3.  
    Posted By: gravelld
    Posted By: fostertom[...] buildings, shamefully, are too hot to handle because it means coercing the owner-occupier electorate.
    I don't think that's the issue. It would be relatively easy to educate the owner-occupiers. The issue is money. Indeed, education is the last thing Government would want to do, because then they might begin to get some pressure put on them about the subject.


    Totally agree. Even those of us who want to make the sorts of thermal improvements to our houses that are needed to help hit the environmental targets are balking at the high cost of doing so. Having zero rated VAT on refurbishments would go some way to help us out and would be the very least the government could do to help.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Does govt ever succeed in 'educating the public'? Give an example. Any such attempt is an invitation to what used to be called 'the tabloids' to generate populist backlash - so easily done, so appealing to Union Jack readership.

    Schools can do it a bit, but takes 20yrs to work into the wide population.

    What does happen is that "those of us who want to make the sorts of thermal improvements to our houses that are needed ..." gradually, sometimes very suddenly, become a voice that media can use as 'story'. Sure govts can 'show leadership' sometimes far ahead of popular awareness, support or demand - but media's sense of 'story', whether for or against, is key.

    Nevertheless, look back any period of time - 1yr, 5yr, 20yr, 100yr - and attitude changes are staggering, and as broad trend for the better, tho with transient reversals (like present fascistic trends). How that happens, whether it's deliberately guided, or just 'truths' emerging through dramatic events, suggests what activists should do now and can hope to achieve.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Posted By: fostertomDoes govt ever succeed in 'educating the public'? Give an example
    Drink driving.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime2 days ago edited
     
    I think that's under the heading of 'govts can 'show leadership' sometimes far ahead of popular awareness, support or demand' - other examples are the smoking ban and the recent sugar tax
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/08/bring-on-nanny-state-if-it-stops-childrens-teeth-falling-out
    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/apr/02/time-to-stockpile-irn-bru-how-sugar-tax-change-nations-favourite-drinks

    It does seem that govt can push ahead with health issues on this basis (though no other that I can think of) - not so long ago that cabinet ministers lost their job for daring to question the Great British Public's dietary addictions, let alone EU interference in same.
  4.  
    Posted By: fostertomDoes govt ever succeed in 'educating the public'?

    Before an entity can attempt to 'educate', it's useful if that entity has already developed an understanding of the topic.

    If they not only understand but also have interest & enthusiasm, that's even better.

    In the context of 'Green Issues' it's not clear that 'govt' meets the first of those let alone the second?
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Depends on the approach you take. "Green issues" might not be the best one.

    "Having a properly built home" might be a better approach.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    No valid examples then of 'govt educating the public'? Yes some examples of govt intervening even against popular sentiment (which may indeed self-educate itself after the event e.g. with the smoking ban, once the change is experienced 'for the better'). Is that what's meant by 'govt educating the public'? I think not.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTime10 hours ago
     
    Tom, when you say 'educate' is that what you mean. Or do you mean 'change behaviour'?
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime9 hours ago edited
     
    I don't know - ask gravelld what he meant
    Posted By: gravelldIt would be relatively easy to educate the owner-occupiers. The issue is money. Indeed, education is the last thing Government would want to do, because then they might begin to get some pressure put on them about the subject.
    Looks to me he meant 'bring knowledge' first, then maybe behaviour would change second.

    Just started reading The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science and Reality
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Republican-Brain-Science-They-Reality/dp/1118094514/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1526804846&sr=8-1&keywords=the+republican+brain
    which is a shamelessly biased title because it's also about why liberals maintain major bias too (although of an interestingly different kind).

    Principal finding so far - if someone on the authoritarian/individualistic side (proxy: 'Republican') is wedded to an idea, trying to 'show them the facts' just stimulates fight-back and strengthens their conviction - and the more educated they are, the stronger their justifications. Whereas someone on the egalitarian/communitarian side (proxy: 'liberal') is far more likely to change their views, given 'proof' - and and the more educated they are, the more flexible.

    So what does that say about 'educating' the Tory-backbone owner-occupier sector?

    I think ST's aware of various behaviour-change techniques which bypass 'education'?
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTime7 hours ago
     
    "The issue is money." ( gravelld )

    Owner occupiers do their own sums and; "worrying about the environment", is not their main priority,- it's money.
    Given that personal aspiration is a goal of most governments, it'll be an uphill struggle to change that behaviour, to one of; let's live in penury and save the planet.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime5 hours ago edited
     
    Posted By: owlmanlet's live in penury and save the planet
    Who ever said that's the proposition? It's energy measures to get out of fuel poverty. Sure there's the question of who pays, but how does penury come into it?
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTime2 hours ago
     
    'Cos for many owner occupiers, and that's what I assumed you were referring to, where you have to spend thousands of new money on energy saving measures, or have a new kitchen, or bathroom, or re-decorate, or do up the garden, and you can only afford one, they opt for any of the latter.
    They can't have it all, and the monetary energy savings aren't enough to pay for the other, often more immediate things, that's why.
    It's a different matter in the rental sector, where the "who pays" question is very relevant. The knock on effect of that is inevitable higher rents.

    I suspect, housing low energy usage, features slightly higher on new build purchases, less so on older, ( include all properties from a previous period), property transactions, where other features are more dominant.
    If you are "doing up" an older property then many will make a some nods to energy usage, every little helps I suppose, but arguably insufficient to make the quantum difference that's Nationally needed.
    So:
    If you're a first timer, money is just too tight.
    If you're a thirty something, young family etc., the chances are you've got other priorities.
    If on the other hand you're at the other end of the life cycle, with a final house sale under your belt, and new money to do things right for your final "new build" resting place, you may choose a significant low energy route. However, even this very small fortunate group have other demands on their wealth and often choose something more modest.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTime1 hour ago edited
     
    Fair enough - I thought I was in the concurrent 'Tenant's rights to improve energy efficiency' thread, which is about tenants ready and willing to spend (some of) the necessary but factors preventing them.

    However, point still is, not about 'saving the planet' but tangible benefits from the spend.

    Ironic that hard-up people find money for 'double glazing' which typically gives 50-100yr payback on energy saved - not even paid off before those plastic windows need replacing prob 3x over.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTime37 minutes ago
     
    I suppose you also have to factor in, that early on in an individual's owner occupier cycle, few plan to remain forever in a particular house. They sum up the energy re-modelling costs, the savings, and the potential extra value it adds, and find there isn't the return. So they bite the bullet with today's energy costs and just do minor things.
    The window thing is most likely for immediate comfort return, plus maintenance, plus security, plus resale value, but illogical long term as you say; but no one's in it for the long term, or the next poor bug...r.
    The technical side of me marvels at the Passiv Haus as a concept but I do ask if all the embodied energy in it's structure is worth it. There's no telling if the air tightness will last, or, if the next occupant a few years down the road will subscribe to "your" energy ideals and if not, they then may proceed to knock a hole in the wall for a conservatory.
    Chasing home energy saving seems like chasing a will-o'-the-wisp, every time you think it's licked someone decides to throw a new "must have" addition to the home who's very production has a global impact. Sure we save, but in the process just move the energy cost somewhere else, same cards just shuffled up differently.
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