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Northern housing association teams up with BRE to create zero-carbon development strategy

A housing association has teamed up with building research specialists BRE Group to develop a strategy to make its development programme “zero carbon ready” by 2038.


Great Places has hired BRE to undertake an analysis of the landlord’s current operations and practices to understand what net zero carbon will mean for the organisation.


This work will include “undertaking a market assessment of technological solutions, liaising with customers, including internal and external stakeholders to build a picture of their requirements, and working with Great Places to update its specifications and standard house types to be flexible for the future”.


BRE will then provide Great Places with practical recommendations it can implement to reduce the carbon footprint of its development programme.


This work is expected to be completed by the end of this summer.


It comes ahead of the launch of Great Places’ three-year carbon management strategy, which will outline how the group plans to reduce its carbon emissions by 15% year on year, with the aim of being a net zero business by 2038.


The 2038 target is in line with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s target for the entire region to be carbon neutral by this date, which is 12 years earlier than the UK government’s 2050 target.


From 2025 onwards, all new homes in England will be fitted with low-carbon forms of heating such as heat pumps, as part of the government’s new Future Homes Standard.


Peter Bojar, executive director of growth and assets at Great Places, said: “As a platinum-level Carbon Literacy organisation we’ve been committed to reducing the carbon footprint of the organisation for some time.


“With enhanced carbon standards for new build housing on the horizon and as we embark on our largest affordable development programme to date, it’s an opportune moment to evolve our design standards alongside the BRE Group.


“BRE’s wealth of knowledge in this field provides us with the ability to complete a full 360-degree review of the proposals to ensure they strike the right balance for our customers, our external stakeholders and Great Places.”


Gillian Charlesworth, chief executive of the BRE Group, added: “Making buildings fit for the future is central to our work at BRE and we are proud to have partnered with Great Places to support them in making their affordable development programme zero carbon ready by 2038.


“Looking at how to reduce and ultimately remove carbon emissions from housing stock is essential if we are to reach net zero by 2050, and BRE are uniquely placed to advise on how best to achieve this.”

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