Environmental Assessment Methods

Code For Sustainable Homes (CSH)

The "Code For Sustainable Homes" became operational in England in April 2007 and from May 1st 2008 it will be mandatory for all new homes. The code has been prepared by the government with help from the Building Research Establishment (BRE) and the Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA) It will become the single national standard for sustainable homes used by architects, designers and builders therefore offering greater regulatory certainty. In 2004 more than a quarter of the UKs CO2 emissions came from the energy we use to heat, light and run our homes.

Building developments cause a multitude of indirect effects on the environment through: consumption of goods and services, production of buildings and machinery, mining of resources and the afterlife of the building. Often the indirect effects of developments are worse for the environment than the direct effects. The "Code For Sustainable Homes" will form the basis for future building developments whilst also considering the indirect effects of building and the buildings afterlife. The CSH will help our building requirements and protect the environment at the same time. 

For more information and case studies visit www.communities.gov.uk

The Code

The code has been developed using BRE's ecohomes system which has already achieved success in reducing the environmental impact of affordable housing projects. This system is different to the ecohomes system because it is a lot simpler, buildings can be awarded up to 6 stars depending on how energy efficient they are. "The Code For Sustainable Homes" is closely related to building regulations, therefore compulsory. The code measures:

  • Energy/CO2
  • Pollution
  • Water
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Materials
  • Management
  • Surface water run-off                                    
  • Ecology
  • Waste                                                                 

For more information visit http://www.planningportal.gov.uk

Case study of CSH in the UK