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Simplifying Code – Health to Ecology

Natural light is a winner

There are only four sections under Health & Wellbeing, but there are enough points available here to make up a reasonable chunk of the total points on offer.

If you can make sure the main rooms of the house receive high levels of natural sunlight – especially the kitchen – then you can claim three points. You’ll need a Daylight Calculation completed to prove this.

A further four credits are available if you have the houses sound tested – this is to check how much noise travels between party walls, and Lifetime Homes can earn you up to another four. These are available if you build the house so that it is accessible and usable by people of all ages, able bodied and disabled. A separate 16 point checklist must be ticked off to claim these credits. Lifetime Homes is mandatory for Level 6 homes only.

Finally, there’s a health credit available for any house which has a private garden or outside space.

Home User Guides

If you have Home User Guides produced you can earn up to three Management credits, and a further two are on offer if you sign up and commit to going ‘significantly beyond best practice’ of the Considerate Constructors Scheme (or similar). Two more can be claimed if you consult and follow guidance of a Crime Prevention Design Advisor from the local police force.

If you can prove 80% of timber on site is responsibly sourced, you adopt best practice policies for construction pollution and you monitor CO2 and energy use from construction traffic and water consumption, you can claim two further management point

Ecologist

There are only nine credits in the whole of Ecology, but they’re heavily weighted. There are five sections; most of which need the assistance of a suitably qualified ecologist.

One you can do yourself is earn two credits by building to three storeys... a floor area to footprint area of 3:1 shows you are optimising land space.

With your ecologist on hand there are seven further points available. Up to four of these can be achieved if you can prove the development will introduce more than nine new species to the site per hectare.

If your site already has an ecological interest you can earn a further credit for protecting features from damage during construction. Or, if you can show your plot of land has a limited value of wildlife, and therefore building on it won’t have much of an impact to nature, you’ll get a credit automatically.

Another credit is available if you follow up your ecologist’s recommendation report to enhance the ecology of the site.

Summary

That’s all 34 categories from all nine sections covered. Remember that some of the above are mandatory, while others are rarely worth the expense and would be advisable to steer clear of.

Stay tuned for future blogs and mini-blog series.

Jon Ponting

Author: Jon Ponting

This article was published by Jon Ponting on 01.03.2013.