Britain is mandating all new homes built after 2016 produce zero carbon emissions. It’s an essential element of the nation’s plan to cut carbon emissions by 80% for 2050, the New York Times reports.
Britain, unlike the U.S., has a dearth of housing. It is building 3 million new homes to satisfy a shortage.
It is still trying to pin down what a zero carbon house is. Essentially, it means energy use is as limited as possible. Solar paneled roofs and well insulated windows should help. If any power is pulled from the national grid, the house is required to feed power back into the grid at some point later.
The definition needs to be refined so that builders know what they can expect in the next 7 years.
The Times estimates that the super efficient homes will add $32,000 to the price. That might be lower once scale kicks in on the technologies being used. As it is now, rooftop solar panels or small scale wind turbines aren’t in demand on a large scale.
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