Passivhaus Affiliate

Build Back Better

UK Government climate advisors, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), insist that getting people back to work after the coronavirus lockdown & kick-starting the economy should focus on low-carbon work programmes. We could not agree more! The transition to net-zero emissions can significantly contribute to the recovery.

The CCC’s 6 tenets for a resilient recovery to generate new jobs, protect the climate and ensure a fairer economy for all:

  1. Use climate investments to support economic recovery and jobs.
  2. Lead a shift towards positive, long-term behaviours.
  3. Tackle the wider ‘resilience deficit’ on climate change
  4. Embed fairness as a core principle.
  5. Ensure the recovery does not lock-in greenhouse gas emissions or increased risk.
  6. Strengthen incentives to reduce emissions when considering tax changes.

Committee on Climate Change logo

The urgent collective effort to combat the pandemic proves that quick cultural shift change can happen when threats are immediate and apparent. The opportunity to refresh ‘business as usual’ with green stimulus must not pass unseized. It will require sector-wide transformations.


It will be the duty of every responsible government to see that our economies are revived and rebuilt in a way that will stand the test of time. That means investing in industries and infrastructure that can turn the tide on climate change and it means doing all we can to boost resilience, by building economies that can withstand everything that nature can throw at us.”

Dominic Raab, Foreign Secretary

Now the UK Government must develop an ambitious green recovery framework to deliver long-term public health and quality of life within planetary limits post Covid-19. It must drive the industry towards delivering positive environmental impacts and future-proof solutions.


Energy efficiency is the first fuel – the fuel you do not have to use

The UK construction industry accounts for almost a fifth of all UK emissions - The case for energy-efficient buildings and the benefits are well understood, but faster action is both essential and achievable with a green recovery. The question is no longer why, but how. Buildings should be judged on how they perform, and policy must address operational performance. The costs, benefits, and means of achieving this must be set out.  

Led by the Building Performance Network (BPN), the Passivhaus Trust alongside other industry leaders are signatories to the following recommendations and would welcome the opportunity to work with Government on implementation:

1. The operational performance of buildings should be subject to regulatory requirements. The legislative framework should be amended to capture all opportunities where building performance can be influenced and improved i.e. the construction of new buildings, works to existing buildings, sales, and new or renewed leases.

2. In the first instance, regulatory requirements should as a minimum cover energy consumption and carbon emissions. Soon, they should be expanded to cover other aspects of building performance, including indoor air quality and thermal comfort.

3. The public sector should adopt operational building performance minimum requirements now to demonstrate its commitment, help build industry capacity, and improve the performance of its estate.

4. The government should require building performance disclosure and support the necessary infrastructure to underpin it, including appropriate methodologies for assessing and reporting performance, and a commitment to transparency so that performance data can be publicly accessed and analysed.


BPN are keen to accrue support for the position statement from individuals and organisations. If you would like to lend yours, please contact Laura Morgan Forster:


Further Information

Building Performance Network

Take urgent action on six key principles for a resilient recovery, CCC

Green Recovery & the Built environment, UKGBC

Climate Change and COVID-19: UN urges nations to ‘recover better’

A net-zero emissions economic recovery from COVID-19 - COP26 Universities Network briefing


#BuildBackBetter  I   #GreenRecovery   I   #EverythingMustChange       

18th May 2020

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