Building Control Regulations Update 2022

New Buildings

New Technical Booklets F1 (conservation of fuel and power in dwellings) and F2 (conservation of fuel and power in buildings other than dwellings), have been released and came into effect on 30th June 2022 meaning all subsequent planning applications submitted after the 30th June deadline must comply with these revised standards.

These revisions are very much aligned to the NI Executive's new Energy Strategy bringing local energy efficiency standards similar to those currently operating in GB and ROI where Thermal Efficiency Ratings (TER) are met via an increased focus on the installation of low carbon energy solutions.

These welcome changes will help support the transition to increasingly sustainable heating solutions and when
accompanied with high efficiency natural gas system, will continue to offer householders in new build homes all the same convenience and control as enjoyed today.

This short document outlines the key understandings of how these changes may influence future central heating specifications and how a natural gas boiler with controls, complimented with an additional efficiency feature such as PV panels, meets the updated Building Control requirements.

  • From 30th June 2022, new domestic houses must achieve a further 40% reduction in carbon emissions (over and beyond the previous requirements)
  • New domestic apartments must achieve a further 25% reduction in carbon emissions (over and beyond the previous requirements) 
  • New non-domestic buildings must achieve a further 15% reduction (over and beyond the previous requirements)
  • Tightened minimum fabric standards for both new domestic and commercial buildings

These uplifts are in line with Phase 1 of the N.I. Executive's Energy Strategy 'Path to Net Zero Energy’ document released in December 2021.

In summary, developers will have to specify a solution that
betters previous TER ratings by 40% for houses and 25% for apartments for all applications submitted after 30th June 2022.

It is unlikely that this can be achieved simply by fabric upgrades
and will instead require the introduction of a complimentary renewable technology, or alternative suitable energy efficiency technology to accompany a high efficiency gas heating system.

Screenshot 2022 08 02 At 08 48 26 The Path To Net Zero Energy  Safe  Affordable  Clean  Energy Strategy For Northern Ireland Path To Net Zero Pdf

Changes to the compliance standards will require developers to identify the most effective and efficient specification for future domestic builds to meet associated levels of thermal efficiency.

Developers in GB and ROI have been working to similar regulations in recent years and during this time have recognised the value of combining traditional technologies, such as a high efficiency gas boiler with controls, with the introduction of additional energy efficiency enhancements such as Photovoltaic (PV) panels .

The combination of a high efficiency natural gas system with PV panelling, not only surpasses the new efficiency requirements but is also recognised as a cost-effective solution when compared to alternative approaches. This can also provide confidence to householders who will be using a lower carbon energy system, delivered through a trusted primary source of heating where a well established supporting industry already exists.

What does this mean for consumers?

Consumers will continue to be able to enjoy the convenience and lifestyle benefits that a gas heating system can deliver, such as instant hot water and heat whilst also benefitting from the additional
electricity PV panels provide.

It is also important to note that unlike alternative approaches this solution will not require the installation of a hot water cylinder, and with the external panels being located on the roof, it continues to minimise the impact on valuable space for the homeowner.

Mc Governs Sofa
New Buildings2

What is Photovoltaic (PV) Technology?

PV panels generate electricity by converting solar radiation into electricity and consist of solar panels collecting light energy from the sun that is then converted to supply electricity to the home. PV panels are modular in design and can be either integrated into or mounted onto the roof of any
home.

Owners of homes that combine natural gas heating systems and PV technologies will continue to be able to arrive home, switch on the heating and enjoy instant, controllable heat and hot water on demand. This solution is cost effective, clean, efficient and user friendly, which is exactly what homeowners tell us is important to them.

At Phoenix Natural Gas, we remain committed to supporting the local new build sector as we have for the last c25 years. Improving energy efficiency across domestic properties remains central to our continued messaging and we look forward to supporting efforts to deliver increasingly sustainable homes locally, now, and in the future.

We are continuing to work with stakeholders locally and nationally to ensure we are best placed to provide your business with any additional information you might require as a result of the implementation of these enhanced regulations.

If you require any further informaiton on these updates, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our New Build Manager, Eunice McClune on eunice.mcclune@phoenixnaturalgas.com or 028 9055 5563.