The BMF will now receive the following from the Australian Building Codes Board:

  • A full review of energy efficiency provisions in the NCC
  • Recommendations on any changes to the trajectory to ensure industry collaboration on its delivery
  • The taking into account of regional differences within the regulatory impact process, with reference to alternate requirements within individual states and territories

Executive director of the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council Suzanne Toumbourou believes that the ACBC will deliver a solid outcome thanks to their close industry links. As evidence she highlighted their previous role in strengthening the code’s energy efficiency provisions for commercial buildings.

Ms Toumbourou highlighted that improvements to the code for energy efficiency in residential buildings will be expected to follow a similar path as the one the new NCC 2019 Section J followed.

The announcement by the BMF follows on from the COAG pledge to a low carbon built environment early last week.

It also represents the culmination of many years of technical analysis, advocacy and collaboration by ASBEC, the Property Council of Australia and other industry stakeholders after the publication of the National Energy Productivity Plan in 2015.

Ms Tombourou said that implementation of measure 31 in the NEPP, related to the built environment, was beginning.

Francesca Muskovic, PCA national policy manager sustainability and regulatory affairs, said the COAG Energy Council’s approval of the Trajectory for Low Energy Homes, followed by its referral to the BMF to continue its progress through the work of the ABCB was “very welcome”.

Muskovic praised the industry advocacy by the Property Council, ASBEC and a group of consumer advocates.

“We’re hopeful that the BMF will ultimately approve the advice they’ve sought from the ABCB on how best to implement the Trajectory into the future, starting with prospective changes to the NCC in 2022 with a focus on residential buildings.”

“ASBEC’s Built to Perform report showed that a forward pathway for stronger energy standards in the NCC, in addition to providing much needed regulatory certainty for industry, could reduce household energy bills by up to $900 each year, contributing to $29 billion in reduced energy bills and 78 million tonnes of cumulative emissions savings across the economy by 2050.”

“These are conservative estimates because we haven’t accounted for improved health and productivity outcomes that come from energy efficient, comfortable buildings.”