Home  5  Books  5  GBEzine  5  News  5  HelpDesk  5  Register  5  GreenBuilding.co.uk
Not signed in (Sign In)

Categories



Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

PLEASE NOTE: A download link for Volume 1 will be sent to you by email and Volume 2 will be sent to you by post as a book.

Buy individually or both books together. Delivery is free!


powered by Surfing Waves




Vanilla 1.0.3 is a product of Lussumo. More Information: Documentation, Community Support.

Welcome to new Forum Visitors
Join the forum now and benefit from discussions with thousands of other green building fans and discounts on Green Building Press publications: Apply now.




    • CommentAuthorJeff B
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2022
     
    As tough as it will be for many people (including myself on fixed income pension) is this the kick-start that was needed to stimulate Joe Public into looking seriously at energy saving measures?
    • CommentAuthorphiledge
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2022
     
    +1

    The shocking thing about soaring energy prices is Ive not heard a peep in the media or from those that run the country about energy saving or maybe visiting the energy saving trusts web site. I really dont understand how we're going to significantly cut our emmisions if energy conservation isnt the first thing that comes up when talking energy!
    • CommentAuthorvord
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2022 edited
     
    I guess too slow a rise would have been like boiling a frog. (The frog is said to not notice a slow increase in temperature.) Like the French I prefer them fried but sudden big rise in energy prices should get people thinking rather than ignoring it.

    It does encourage me to plan to finish making my secondary glazing this summer.

    It's odd that the only people in the news about this are 'Insulate Britain'. Far from encouraging sensible energy saving measures it's as if someone wants to make the very idea of insulation sound like an oddball thing. One of those conspiracy theories we'll be shunned for and lose friends for our beliefs. I've got a spreadsheet that calculates my beliefs on this subject.

    I'm going to eat more amphibians. Don't like spending money all that much every year. Prefer a hit it advance to save a lot in the future.

    For rented houses (is it more than 50% now?) that won't be an option. It's the tenant not the owner who funds the gas bill. Tenants can't do much about it. Maybe that's why the government finds it difficult to encourage energy saving measures. Most people won't be able to implement them.
  1.  
    lets hope so
    • CommentAuthorselly
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    I think its a real shame and the percieved benefits from it won't be as good as the very real pain from it for many.

    I'm a conservationist and I consider myself a green but I really don't think any climate change problems in 100 years time will outweigh the problems for people in their own lives now.

    We need cheap energy of some sort
    • CommentAuthorrevor
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    One thing for sure many are profiteering from the price hike and there will be CEO's getting v large bonuses somewhere and big shareholder dividends for those with energy shares. And it ain't me.
    About 5/6 years ago an energy "expert" told me that gas prices would drop significantly as USA exported large quantities of LNG as their fracking would give them excess gas. How wrong he is, on the price anyway.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    Posted By: sellyWe need cheap energy of some sort
    Cheap energy of some sort is exactly what has caused the climate crisis. We need to find ways to adapt society to using less energy. Difficulty paying bills doesn't really come into the same category as losing your house to a wildfire or having a whole island drown under you. Or going extinct, if you're a very unlucky species.
  2.  
    Posted By: vordFor rented houses (is it more than 50% now?) that won't be an option. It's the tenant not the owner who funds the gas bill. Tenants can't do much about it. Maybe that's why the government finds it difficult to encourage energy saving measures. Most people won't be able to implement them.

    From the landlords point of view where is the benefit of spending thousands on insulating houses when it can't be passed on to the tenant and the ROI will take decades to come back. Apart from which where is the LL supposed to get the money to do the work anyway, the picture of LL swanning around lighting cigars with 5 pound notes is far from reality, many rely on the rental income as their only pension (apart from the state OAP which as we all know gives a reasonable quality of life - or not.

    Posted By: djh
    Posted By: sellyWe need cheap energy of some sort
    Cheap energy of some sort is exactly what has caused the climate crisis. We need to find ways to adapt society to using less energy. Difficulty paying bills doesn't really come into the same category as losing your house to a wildfire or having a whole island drown under you. Or going extinct, if you're a very unlucky species.

    We do need cheap energy - just not the sort to which we have be accustomed for the last few decades.
    • CommentAuthorJonti
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    Posted By: djh
    Posted By: sellyWe need cheap energy of some sort
    Cheap energy of some sort is exactly what has caused the climate crisis.


    and I thought it was the emissions that had caused it not the price. I find those unfortunate enough to be the position where they cannot pay the bills, where they go hungry and cannot heat their home or even end up on the street deserve a little more sympathy than a 'let them eat cake' attitude.
    • CommentAuthorArtiglio
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    All the net zero posturing and black catting by our leaders has finally met a dose of reality and realisation that the nations householders can’t afford massive energy efficiency improvements. People are far more concerned about the ability to have a car than domestic fuel bills , or at least were till the last month or so.
    The price rises are almost a gift to the policy makers as when wholesale prices eventually come down there’ll be plenty of scope for finagling prices and subsidies to disadvantage gas.

    As for rented properties, there’s a proposal to make the private rented sector achieve an epc C for new lets after ‘25 and all lets by ‘30. But the progress of any legislation is slow as its slowly dawning on our leaders that such a move could result in a huge sell off by private landlords precipitating another housing problem. Plus landlords will be hiking rents to cover the cost.
    There will no doubt be a massive tax payer grant to the social housing sector to bring their properties to a better standard , but given social housings inability to get any semblance of value for money the bill will be horrendous. Plus putting up social rents even to the extent of supposed savings on bills will not be politically a good move , so the tax payer will be well out of pocket. The self same tax payers who’d rather be improving their own homes if they have to improve any.
    Then you have the lack of an energy efficiency industry with the skills, manpower and diligence to do the job properly, any grant scheme will have hordes of cowboys riding across the plains eager to scoop up the cash.
    All a complete ill thought out mess, with few if any upsides.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    Posted By: Peter_in_Hungaryaccustomed for the last few decades
    centuries!
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022
     
    Posted By: ArtiglioAll the net zero posturing and black catting by our leaders has finally met a dose of reality and realisation that the nations householders can’t afford massive energy efficiency improvements.
    What they haven't realized yet is that there's no way to massively increase the supply of carbon-(guilt?)-free energy either. So energy reduction is the only course to follow and that is going to mean standard-of-living reduction. No more holidays in Spain and who knows what else.

    Posted By: ArtiglioAll a complete ill thought out mess, with few if any upsides.
    Now that's a thought I do concur with. :cry:
    • CommentAuthorArtiglio
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2022 edited
     
    djh - significant reductions in the standard of living won’t be tolerated by the electorate, in the absence of some miraculous financial skillduggery that allows the state to fund all the energy efficiency measures with no meaningful recouping of the outlay , it ain’t going to happen by 2050, net zero will most likely get pushed back 15-30 years.

    The kite flying of suggesting mortgage books have to average an epc C, talk of variable stamp duty linked to efficency ratings , would just about stall the housing market, likely lead to house price decline, destroy consumer confidence and result in economic decline.

    Energy policy formulated on the back of “expected” technological advancements and promises of ever cheaper wind energy ( quite how that squares with paying constraint payments to a massively enlarged wind generation industry on windy days or financial instruments to avoid paying them isn’t discussed) but still needing back up generating capacity , just doesn’t add up.

    All the dreams and aspirations would be fine if we had a massively successful economy and correspondingly high budget surpluses, but we don’t and does anyone see one on the horizon?

    We’ll undoubtedly get there in good time , but not before Greta has grandchildren.
    • CommentAuthormarsaday
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2022
     
    EPC of C to come in for 2025 and 2028 for existing tenancies.

    Many LL's are selling and have sold. The supply of housing is dropping and so rents are going up. Are they going up because of the EPC directives or because everything is going up. Well stuff is going up, so rents would be higher, but rental stock is non existent and I know it is because the older LL has decided enough is enough. They have been hit with much higher taxation changes brought in by george osbourne, the need now for electrical testing every 5 years and now the realisation that a lot of money will need to be spent on bringing houses up to a C grade.

    Watch this space, it is going to get a lot worse. I myself have sold 3 solid walled terrace houses in Yorkshire where I used to live. They are D rated now, but to get to a C will require solar fitting and some work on the wall insulation. I am happy to pass these on to a younger person to tackle.

    I am still renting, but on development now I make sure the house can achieve a C rating now. This means buying run down stuff which needs everything doing. It takes me 6 months on average to fully gut and put back.

    Currently i am going all electric on a top floor flat. I am taking the gamble longer term electric will be rerated to be seen as more green. I am insulating this flat like crazy, but it is all worth zero because I will be using flexible electric heaters (not the crappy inflexible E7 ones). This means the flat just gets a low D rating.

    It really is annoying, but I am plowing ahead and if the worse situation does occur, I will have to replace with E7 heaters later this decade. I just hope electric is rerated.
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2022 edited
     
    Posted By: marsadayCurrently i am going all electric on a top floor flat. I am taking the gamble longer term electric will be rerated to be seen as more green. I am insulating this flat like crazy, but it is all worth zero because I will be using flexible electric heaters (not the crappy inflexible E7 ones). This means the flat just gets a low D rating.
    If you insulate well, and assuming the insulation is not all internal, then the time constant of the flat should be long enough that you can use 'instantaneous' heaters on an E7 tariff, just as we do. But then we have a certified passivhaus with PV that only achieves a 'C' rating. So methinks it measures the wrong things!

    I just hope electric is rerated.
    It seems pretty clear it will be, eventually :bigsmile:
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2022
     
    PS
    Posted By: marsadayMany LL's are selling and have sold.
    That seems to be the general aim of policy. Whether it's wise or not I couldn't say.
    • CommentAuthorArtiglio
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2022
     
    <blockquote><cite>Posted By: djh</cite>PS
    <blockquote><cite>Posted By: marsaday</cite>Many LL's are selling and have sold.</blockquote>That seems to be the general aim of policy. Whether it's wise or not I couldn't say.</blockquote>

    The idea seems to be to encourage big corporate companies into becoming landlords with build to rent, that’s all well and good but they don’t want the bottom 20-30% of the rental market, these same lower rental value properties are precisely the ones that will be pretty uneconomic to improve and so as ever it’ll be those on lower incomes that suffer.
    I don’t have a large portfolio , but they consist largely of a 2000 conversion and 2004 new build, at the time i added extra insulation and under current epc calculation all but one makes a C, remaining one would have done if i’d thought to show that the wall adjoining the common areas was insulated. BUT if the calculation is tilted to make gas less favourable , those same flats won’t make a C and in the end of the market i’m in, there’s no way i’d recoup the costs of changing over to electric and more insulation in my lifetime (at least not without huge rent increases).
    As ever those on lower incomes are going to find life hard, unless there is some sort leeway or change to the proposals.
    However no doubt the treasury has its beady little eye on the cgt reciepts when landlords do sell, having held my property for nigh on 20 years , the bill is significant as a resultmof the tinkering over that period to the way its levied.
    Pretty sure the gov can see what will happen if the proposal goes forward as suggested, just remains to ne seenmif they have some wizard wheeze to head it off.
    • CommentAuthorselly
    • CommentTimeFeb 6th 2022
     
    <blockquote><cite>Posted By: djh</cite><blockquote><cite>Posted By: selly</cite>We need cheap energy of some sort</blockquote>Cheap energy of some sort is exactly what has caused the climate crisis. We need to find ways to adapt society to using less energy. Difficulty paying bills doesn't really come into the same category as losing your house to a wildfire or having a whole island drown under you. Or going extinct, if you're a very unlucky species.</blockquote>

    Extinctions are not new. Neither are wildfires exclusive to climate change.

    People need cheap energy to keep warm, get to work, have a decent life etc. We must not lose sight of this
    •  
      CommentAuthordjh
    • CommentTimeFeb 6th 2022
     
    Posted By: sellyExtinctions are not new. Neither are wildfires exclusive to climate change.
    No but they are a lot more prevalent now.

    People need cheap energy to keep warm, get to work, have a decent life etc.
    When I was a boy we had frost on the inside of windows in winter. We were lucky and had a car, many did not, and exceptionally few had more than one. We had good holidays at English coastal resorts and even sometimes went as far as Scotland. I remember having a happy childhood. A decent life is all a matter of definition and affordability. We can't afford to wreck the planet so we need to stop the behaviour that is causing it.
    • CommentAuthorselly
    • CommentTimeFeb 6th 2022
     
    <blockquote><cite>Posted By: djh</cite><blockquote><cite>Posted By: selly</cite>Extinctions are not new. Neither are wildfires exclusive to climate change.
    </blockquote>No but they are a lot more prevalent now.

    <blockquote>People need cheap energy to keep warm, get to work, have a decent life etc.</blockquote>When I was a boy we had frost on the inside of windows in winter. We were lucky and had a car, many did not, and exceptionally few had more than one. We had good holidays at English coastal resorts and even sometimes went as far as Scotland. I remember having a happy childhood. A decent life is all a matter of definition and affordability. We can't afford to wreck the planet so we need to stop the behaviour that is causing it.</blockquote>

    Are extinctions really more prevalent? What was the last species to go extinct in the UK?

    Sorry we cannot, will not and are not going to go back in time. People's lives are different now - they want, need and expect to travel, to keep warm, to have stuff. It is not going to go away - and if one person decides to do without there are plenty of others who won't. This is realistic
    • CommentAuthormalakoffee
    • CommentTimeFeb 6th 2022 edited
     
    Hmmmm . . .. Now if there was some way to realistically bring the COST of environmental damage into our current Economic System . . . .
    Everything would cost MORE. Everyone would have to do with LESS.
    Yes, we would actually have to consider the environmental damage of our personal decisions ( which are largely or completely ignored. )
    GONE would be the vast range of activities which burn fossil-fuels to fulfil peoples' whims. Whole industries, massive energy-greedy industries, have grown up to fulfil superfluous, wish-fulfilment.
    Time also to reconsider the distribution of wealth so that ALL have the basics for their needs.
    However, people will continue to vote for the unsustainable status-quo a.k.a self-destruction. Interesting times !!
    • CommentAuthorselly
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    Communism then?

    That didn't go very well!
  3.  
    Before anyone gets too nostalgic for the single glazing and 20mpg cars of their youth, it's worth remembering that UK CO2 emissions were massively higher back then than they are now, even including imports.

    AFAICS, our reductions in CO2 since then are because people have chosen more efficient cars, boilers, windows and power stations. Overwhelmingly they chose those for more comfort and a better/cheaper lifestyle, not because they cared very much about CO2. Or because efficiency rules were imposed on light bulbs, condensing boilers and cars in ways which didn't affect anyone's comfort. Or because the coal and landfill industries were replaced by cheaper alternatives.

    The implication is that further CO2 reductions come from making people more comfortable and prosperous not less: insulation, electric heat and transport, WFH instead of commuting, amenity woodland instead of industrial farmland etc.

    The surge in gas and electricity prices must be a windfall opportunity for developers of wind and solar farms, not hearing much said publicly by them?
    • CommentAuthorArtiglio
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    WIA

    Whilst all true, in terms of increasing efficiency over the years, however people now drive far more than they did, 2 car households are pretty much the norm, homes are heated to far great a temperature than in the 80’s, how many households put a jumper on rather than turn the heating up? The huge increases in pretty much disposable electric gadgetry, tv’s would be kept for 20 years and repaired if they failed. These days homes have 4 or 5 and one will likely be replaced every year. At my primary school one lad went to spain for his holiday came back with the bullfighting poster and hat, at the time it was similar to meeting a spacex tourist today. Not forgetting the energy consumption of the internet.
    There are
  4.  
    But even with more affluent lives, our absolute total emmisions (in tonnes of CO2) now are 50% less than they used to be, or 30% including offshored industry . That's the data.

    As you suggested, energy efficiency is much better now. You can drive 3 Ford Focuses, for less fuel than it took to drive 1 Ford Anglia. A LED TV uses probably one tenth the materials and electricity of a CRT TV. Bogstandard DG has one third the U value of single glazing.

    So even if families have two Focuses and 5 TVs now, and heat their DG house to 22 instead of 17⁰C, they are still emitting less than they used to in 'the good old days'.

    When they get EVs and heat pumps in the next decade or two, they will emit even less, they will be keener on those if they get cheaper transport and warmer houses. Hair shirts are just not required!

    Edit: just checking the numbers, you can now run 5 LED TVs for less CO2 than you used to get from a single incandescent lightbulb, running off a coal power station.
    • CommentAuthorArtiglio
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    Ok, yep that makes sense.
    • CommentAuthorbhommels
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    Posted By: WillInAberdeenBut even with more affluent lives, our absolute total emmisions (in tonnes of CO2) now are 50% less than they used to be, or 30% including offshored industry . That's the data.

    There are 30% more of us (in the UK, since 1950) too, so the efficiency savings just about offset population growth. "Net Zero", but in a different way.
    • CommentAuthorborpin
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    Those that cannot afford the fuel, certainly cannot afford to spend on improving efficiency.

    The new houses built are such poor quality they are in some instances worse than old houses.

    Energy is priced so that the more you use, the less you pay per kWh consumed (Standing charge spread more thinly) which is barking mad. Green levies & infrastructure charges should be a % not a fixed amount.

    We need more nuclear (SMRs) and more domestic gas. Gas & Oil will still be needed even after we stop burning it to power things.
  5.  
    Posted By: bhommelsThere are 30% more of us (in the UK, since 1950) too, so the efficiency savings just about offset population growth. "Net Zero", but in a different way.

    Didn't follow that, could you explain?

    The total tonnes emitted by everyone in UK (adjusted for imports) are down by 30% so are now at 70% of their peak, even though the number of people is up by (you said) 30% so there are now 130% of the people - so the emissions per person are now 70/130= about 50% as much emissions per person?

    That's good, though I guess it's the absolute tonnes that the climate cares about, rather than the tonnes/person.
    • CommentAuthorbhommels
    • CommentTimeFeb 7th 2022
     
    Posted By: WillInAberdeen
    Didn't follow that, could you explain?

    My mind inserting a "/capita" while I wasn't looking!
    :shocked:
   
The Ecobuilding Buzz
Site Map    |   Home    |   View Cart    |   Pressroom   |   Business   |   Links   
Logout    

© Green Building Press