The future for energy and development, draft London Plan shows the way

Following publication of the draft London Plan, Greengage have the following energy-related recommendations for new projects:

  • Include Accredited or Enhanced Construction Detailing (ACDs or ECDs) within the domestic architectural package. Residential developments should aim to achieve a 10% CO2 reduction from energy efficiency measures alone. All Greengage developments in 2017 achieved the 10% reduction, including the Clapham Park development.
  • Early dynamic thermal modelling proposed buildings/spaces to understand where energy is being used, so that it can be saved. Non-residential developments should achieve a 15% CO2 reduction from energy efficiency measures alone. The design of the building envelope is likely more critical as much as the building systems selected.
  • Undertake a carbon footprinting exercise to understand where there are opportunities to reduce carbon emissions in their materials specification. Boroughs are now accepting applications for carbon offsetting projects. Funding would help the economic performance and viability of the project while specifying a greener construction with less embodied carbon. Boroughs must establish and administer a carbon offset fund. Offset fund payments must be ring-fenced to implement projects that deliver greenhouse gas reductions. The operation of offset funds should be monitored and reported on annually. Greengage will be submitting carbon offset funding applications on new developments in 2018 and we are expecting an emerging market for more sustainable building products.
  • Map out free roofspace for potential solar installations on all London property portfolios. Boroughs must maximise opportunities to generate electricity and heat from solar technologies and may seek roofspace in the capital for offset fund retrofit projects. London will be a zero-carbon city by 2050. For this to happen, London will need to be supplied by a range of clean and renewable energy sources.  The Mayor will seize the opportunity for solar energy in the capital and increase installations in the coming years through his flagship Energy for Londoners (EfL) programme.
  • Undertake post-occupancy monitoring surveys on existing assets in order to evaluate performance of developments that have been through planning. The aim is to de-risk additional offset payments being required should development fall short of targeted performance. It is likely that major developments will be required to monitor and report on energy performance and reporting to the Mayor for at least five years via an online portal to enable the GLA to identify good practice and report on the operational performance of new development in London. Greengage is already collaborating with Energy Deck to track, investigate and manage energy use to save costs, cut carbon, and improve health & well-being on a site in London.
  • Undertake affordability assessments to consider the running costs of the building systems proposed and how this relates to the income profile of local people. Some low-zero carbon systems have higher operating costs for future owners, therefore designing for low energy costs should also be a consideration alongside the zero-carbon target. The new London plan will be requiring an analysis of the expected cost to occupants associated with the proposed energy strategy. As part of socio-economic assessments of new development projects, Greengage have quantified the alleviation of fuel poverty in a number of projects.