If one ever needed hard evidence that we as a society are not ready to be sustainable you simply have to look at what sustainability issues have been ejected from regulatory control because of the abolition of the Code for Sustainable Homes. Government has been keen to unlock the obstacles to house building and besides the obvious land supply and planning control issues they have been directed to the extra development costs involved in meeting the various levels required within the Code for Sustainable Homes. So in a way, it means that even with new build, start from scratch projects we have found excuses not to be as sustainable as we can be. What example does it set that as a developed country we cannot afford to build to environmentally sustainable standards?
The real issue is not that we supposedly cannot afford to build to truly sustainable standards, it is that we as a country decided to leave the supply of social and affordable house building to market forces. We need public money going back into building a large part of the housing supply and fast.
Ian McKay Dip Arch RIBA