The RIBA Practice Department made this announcement today:
“John Healey has put industry on notice that new Part L regulations with their requirement for a 25% improvement in energy efficiency will come into force in October this year. The housing and planning minister laid the statutory order before parliament this week, along with orders for revisions to Parts F and J largely prompted by the new energy performance standards.
There is still no sign of supporting technical guidance and updated Approved Documents however – the official line from CLG last week was that they will be ‘made available shortly’. If CLG manages to publish before the end of the month, architects and contractors will have just six months to incorporate the requirements into pipeline schemes.
What is available now is the definitive Approved Document for Part G on sanitation and the new water efficiency standard due to come into force on 6 April 2010. These regulations had been due to be introduced last October, but were derailed by technical queries at EU level, requiring a minimum standstill period and a new Approved Document.
Part G changes bring in the first water efficiency standard for new dwellings, set at 125 litres per person per day, along with new safety regulations that include temperature limiting for bath water, the extension of hot water safety measures beyond vented systems and rules on greywater and rainwater harvesting.
The great technical challenge facing the industry this year is Part L, of course, with a major improvement required in the performance of building fabric and services and a new aggregated approach to performance for non-domestic buildings in recognition of their diversity. The new requirements will apply to extensions and conversions and building fabric renovations. Supporting roles are being played by Part F, with new requirements for ventilation systems due to Part L’s improved airtightness standards, and Part J, which will upgrade the safety of combustion appliances and introduce carbon monoxide alarms for all solid fuel appliances.”