Key questions on healthy living and housing
By Dr Sophie Taysom, Keyah Consulting Ltd, IET Healthcare Panel Member
How do we make our homes more resilient to climate change? What does the industry need to do and what does it need to consider for instance with respect to design solutions?
- To include household users to determine requirements rather than focusing on building services and operations that fail to include them.
- Develop whole house plans so that changes aren’t one-off and will meet longer-term needs such as the need to have homes that can be adapted to the impact of climate change.
- Consider the role of environmentally friendly greenery for example which can reduce the impact of the heat island effect and have other benefits.
On the government’s Green Home funding announcements, how do we ensure we get this right?
- Ensure that insulation is fit for purpose i.e. different areas have different requirements.
- £2bn of funding is nowhere near the scale to change but it a step in the right direction.
- Use the funds to instead develop a ‘whole house’ plan which requires thinking about other impacts and what’s needed in the longer term. Any funds remaining could then be used to take initial steps.
How do we get the financing right?
- There is a real challenge is making this affordable both in terms of retrofit and new housing.
- Make a clear business case for long term investment which provides financial returns.
- Doing this at scale could have a major impact and provide opportunities for reinvestment.
- There’s a need for packaging retrofit projects in a way that they can be scaled, making retrofit a more attractive investment proposition. Build on growing requirements for investments to reflect environmental, social and governance standards (ESG).
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