Energy use in homes accounts for 14% of UK Green House Emissions. Unfortunately, the UK are currently not meeting their goal set for 2030 – to reduce these emissions by 24%.
There are 29 million existing homes across the UK, rising to an estimated 30.5 million by the end of 2022, all of which must be resilient to the effects of climate change whilst reducing their energy needs, carbon emissions and running costs. New build homes can implement novel approaches to these challenges, whilst existing homes may need to undergo a retrofitting to meet the UK’s Net zero carbon targets.
Retrofitting is the process of introducing new materials, products and technologies to existing assets . In the built environment retro fitting is usually carried out to repair damaged or deteriorating structures and upgrade internal systems. However, there is an increasing driver to reduce and optimise the energy efficiency of an asset to improve affordability and also raise comfort levels for occupants and owners
Retrofit for the Future
Retrofit for the Future was a programme led by Innovate UK to explore how existing homes in the UK can be improved to use less energy, cut carbon emissions and ultimately save costs. By its end in 2014 it had catalysed the retrofit of over 100 homes of varying types across the UK. During the process the goal of the programme was to reduce the in-use CO2 emissions of each property by 80%.
The competition was a great way to increase collaboration between housing providers, designers, contractors and researchers. It helped to stimulate new business opportunities in the retrofit market.
Since the conclusion of the programme Innovate UK have produced reports on the projects as well as the programmes outputs, these can be found using the links below:
The BRE Trust have also funded training material for retrofitting homes which is hosted through the BRE Academy