The Code, which oversees minimum standards for structures, is intended to guarantee minimal safety, health, comfort and energy expenses in new buildings and renovations. Yet due to the code’s poor enforcement, consumers are not receiving the safe, functional buildings they ordered.
The Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council (ASBEC) is calling on State and Territory governments to shield consumers by transforming the manner in which building compliance is enforced.
Australian families building or renovating houses must receive what they deserve, as per the code: a safe house with minimal standards for energy performance. Houses that lack compliance may pose health and comfort risks, along with sticking home owners with high utility bills, says ASBEC’s Executive Director Suzanne Toumbourou.
She adds that commercial patrons also risk encountering higher energy expenses if the Code goes unenforced.
Building Confidence, a 2018 report by Professor Peter Shergold and Bronwyn Weir, commissioned by Australia’s Building Ministers Forum, discovered big problems with the enforcement of the Code and devised 22 recommendations to address the problems.
It’s the duties of State and Territory governments to ensure the rules are adhered to and that buildings complied with the Code, said Nicholas Burt, Chair of ASBEC’s Compliance Working Group and CEO of the Facility Management Association of Australia.
ASBEC has spoken out in support of the recommendations stated in Building Confidence. They work in collaboration with industry leaders to collect 25 crucial policy responses to guarantee Australians get healthy, comfortable, energy efficient.
ASBEC’s policy responses want to guarantee these edicts:
- Chief competencies and accreditation for building pros who undergo energy efficiency assessments.
- A nationally regulated system of regulatory oversight to guarantee that energy efficiency standards are accomplished.
- Building documentation and permits should guarantee that energy and sustainability guidelines in the Code are addressed.
- A Building Log Book (or Electronic Building Passport) that can be audited and passed on to subsequent owners to ensure that structures remain adherent throughout their lifespan.
Overall, Toumbourou believes that an enforced Code will be conducive to a better, more sustainable Australia.