Homes England, which shamefully had not been including sustainability in its tenders or plans, is now working to rectify this. I recently joined many others, possibly you (!) at a workshop for this facilitated by BRE and the Design Council. There were so many amazing experts in the (Zoom) room. I hope our input is taken on in full.
And all of this is being influenced by the incredible work of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), the body responsible for advising the Government on how to achieve our carbon budget. In December the CCC released a roadmap to zero carbon, with sector models including for buildings.
Notwithstanding questions over Cumbrian coal mines, and the apparent difficulty of getting its head around what is needed, it seems that the British Government is now genuinely committed to achieving net zero and to walking the talk ahead of COP26.
We now need to speak with clear, constructive and consistent messages, standing side by side with the big industry players, about what is needed in the form of policy, training, support and incentives. We can do this via MPs, select committees and through policy consultations.
Then, keeping everything crossed, we can begin 2022 aligned to set off with a workable plan to achieve net zero in our sector and help reverse biodiversity loss.
For many years at Bioregional, we have been building or advising on the development of sustainable, zero-carbon communities which enable One Planet Living. As a purpose-led organisation, we have always drawn on our experience and the stories of these projects to influence government policy and industry practice. We are contributing as best we can to this current wave of activity.
I for one am challenging myself to make the time to keep contributing to the policy, to think big, and to partner with others, so we can get our collective shoulders behind the delivery of a net-zero and sustainable built environment.
I really believe that finally, we can do this!