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Buildings action plan

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Introduction

In order to reach national carbon-reduction targets emissions from Dorset buildings will need to be eliminated and all energy used to maintain a comfortable indoor environment will need to be generated from renewable sources. 

Dorset Council is extremely limited in the powers it has to achieve this. However, we do have control of our own current buildings and any future buildings that are constructed on our land. We are also able to influence and stimulate action with partners to facilitate change.

After detailed evidence and information gathering exercises, led by the EAP and carried out by officer working groups, it has been recommended that the Council implement the following 37 actions.

Milestones have been identified for each action. This plan shows the immediate  targets we will need to achieve by 2023 to keep us on track.

Objective 1

Buildings - Objective 1
 ObjectiveAction type CO2 saving potential  Co-benefitsCost 
 

Ensure Council estate becomes zero-carbon by 2040

Direct action Low

Improves ecology

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

High
Action plan for buildings
ActionsAction type  CO2 saving potentialCo-benefits Cost 2021-2023 target 
Ensure climate & ecological considerations are included as part of the Asset Review, and that the future asset management plan is aligned to achieving DC carbon budgets to 2040

 

Direct action Low

Improved ecology

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

None Guidance created and deployed by 2022

Commission study to identify opportunities for small scale on-site renewable energy installations on Council buildings & assets

 
Direct action Low None Medium Studies completed by June 2021
 

Carry out audits to identify opportunities to retrofit energy efficiency, water efficiency, and renewable energy generation across the estate on completion of the Asset Review.

Direct action Low

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

High  

250 audits carried
by 2023
(80 by 2022,
120 by 2023)

 

Increase capacity of Energy Team to develop and implement retrofit programme

Direct action  Low  None High   

Additional capacity in place by Dec 2021

 

Implement retro fit programme (to include LEDs, thermal upgrade, ambient cooling, conversions to low carbon energy sources) based on audits

Direct action Low

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

High  

10% of programme
completed by 2023

(5% by 2022,
5% by 2023)

 

Ensure procurement specification favours energy efficient equipment

 

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability None  

Procurement specification specifies energy efficient equipment
by Dec 2021

 

Investigate the costs involved in making key buildings (such as County Hall & South Walks House) carbon neutral 

Direct action  Low Encourages economic sustainability   Low  

Costs identified & analysis completed
by Dec 2021

 

Re-instate a school’s energy programme to support and work with schools to reduce energy and maximise use of renewable energy technologies

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability High  

Schools liaison officer employed, Plan developed & initiated, Improvement targets set by 2022

 

Expand centralised utility management service across Dorset Council to incorporate an oversight of energy use, monitor consumption and target energy reduction at site level.

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability High  

Energy officer employed, Plan developed & initiated, Improvement  targets set by 2022

 

Expand centralised energy management system

Direct action Low Enhances health and wellbeing High  

System expanded by 20% by 2023

(10% each year)

 

Review operational controls on energy using equipment across council estate to ensure optimum efficiency

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability None  

50% of building controls checked by 2023
(25% each year)

 

Keep cost/payback of streetlights, bollards and signals under review to identify when they meet a payback that satisfies loan requirements or finance policy requirements

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability High  

Review cost benefit
annually and implement viable projects

Objective 2

Objective 2 - buildings
 ObjectiveAction type CO2 saving potential Co-benefits Cost 
 

Ensure all new Council developments are zero-carbon

Direct action

Partnership /influence action

Low

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Medium
Actions for objective 2 - buildings
 ActionAction typeCO2 saving potentialCo-benefits Cost2021-2023 target
 

Establish a policy to ensure all new buildings that Dorset Council has direct influence over (as landowners, clients, or designers) are zero-carbon (this being true zero-carbon, and so a negative BER to cover the unregulated emissions)

Direct action  Low  

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Low  

Policy developed by March 2022

 

Trial tools to measure the embodied carbon in construction, such as the open source “EC3” tool

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability Low   

Future action beyond 2023

 

Investigate available tools to incorporate whole-life costing into property processes

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability Low  

Future action beyond 2023

 

Promote more sustainable materials for new constructions based on the BREEAM tool

Direct action Low Encourages economic sustainability Low  

Future action beyond 2023

 

 

Develop and promote case studies and examples of best practice on our own estate to encourage replication by others

Partnership /influence action  Low Encourages economic sustainability Medium   

Future action beyond 2023

Objective 3

Objective 5 - buildings
Objective Action type CO2 saving potential Co-benefits  Cost

Decarbonise heating in housing and community, public and commercial buildings

Partnership /influence action Medium

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Medium
Actions for objective 3 - buildings
 ActionAction type CO2 saving potential Co-benefits  Cost2121-2023 target 
 

Lobby government for clarity on national strategy for heat and national policy framework

Partnership /influence action High Encourages economic sustainability None  

Lobby paper presented to Government in 2021

 

Investigate large scale installation of low carbon sources of heating (air/ground/water source heat pumps), using social housing as a test bed in partnership with Registered Social Landlords (RSLs)

Partnership /influence action Medium

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

None  

Liaised with RSLs to assess their plans,
and Identify potential for large scale installations by 2022

 

Undertake heat mapping exercises to identify opportunities for low carbon heat in Dorset such as any clusters of buildings suitable for district heating, or large heat demands off the gas grid

Partnership /influence action Medium Encourages economic sustainability Low  

Heat mapping
completed by March 2022

 

Investigate support for Dorset Council employees working from home in winter (funding / thermal upgrades / advice)

Direct action Low

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Medium  

Advice provided to employees, and Funding opportunities
investigated & identified by June 2021

 

Targeted campaign to encourage all buildings off the gas grid to switch to heat pumps or biomass for heating

Partnership /influence action Medium Encourages economic sustainability Low

Communications plan developed

Campaign initiated
by Dec 2022

 

Use Council buildings in trial projects to test the use of hydrogen heating

 

Partnership /influence action High

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Low Future action beyond 2023
 

Investigate potential in Dorset for large-scale ‘blue’ hydrogen generation with carbon capture and storage

Partnership /influence action High Encourages economic sustainability Low  Future action beyond 2023
 

Access new funding to assist residents to decarbonise heating (delivered through Healthy Homes Dorset Scheme)

Direct action High

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and  wellbeing

None Green Homes Grant bid made 

by Sept 2020

Objective 4

Objective 5 - buildings
Objective Action type  CO2 saving potentialCo-benefits  Cost
 

Ensure new buildings in Dorset are zero-carbon

Indirect action

Partnership /influence action

Medium

Improves ecology

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and  wellbeing

Medium 
Actions for objective 4 - buildings
 ActionAction type CO2 saving potential Co-benefits Cost 2021-2023 target
 

Develop a positive planning framework, in partnership with other agencies, for achieving true net zero carbon home standards in Dorset’

Indirect action Medium Encourages economic sustainability Low

Planning framework in place by Dec 2021, adopted by 2023

 

Encourage designs and layouts which lend themselves to low-carbon energy solutions, and provide guidance and advice for developers to achieve zero carbon standards

 

Indirect action Medium

Improves ecology

Builds resilience

Medium Guidance developed 

by Sept 2022

 

Ensure the relevant housing strategies and policies incorporate the reduction of carbon emissions and increased risk to climate impacts

Indirect action Medium

Improves ecology

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

None  

Plans / Strategies identified in 2021

Carbon emission reductions & risk to climate impacts
incorporated in plans
by Sept 2022

 

Develop trials and pilots, with Registered Social Landlords (RSLs), of localised off-site manufacturing for new build and retrofit

Partnership /influence action Medium

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Low Investigate potential with RSLs 

by Dec 2021

Objective 5

Objective 5 - buildings
 Objective Action typeCO2 saving potential Co-benefits  Cost
 

Improve energy efficiency of current housing stock

Indirect action

Partnership /influence action

 Medium

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Medium 
Actions for objective 5 - buildings
 ActionAction typeCO2 saving potential Co-benefits  Cost2021-2023 target
 

Enforce minimum energy efficiency standards in the private rental sector (focus on EPC certificates E & F without exemptions)

Indirect action Low

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

High

Enforcement plan
developed by 2022

 
 

Work in partnership (e.g. with Registered Social Landlords (RSLs), other councils and partners) to deliver programmes to improve energy efficiency of housing stock & hard to treat properties

Partnership /influence action  Medium  

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

None Strategy developed in 2021 and 

Programmes initiated by 2022

 

Educate residential and non-residential sectors on low-carbon technologies, energy efficiency, and sources of funding to encourage behaviour change & greater uptake of low-carbon technology

 

Partnership /influence action Medium  

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

Medium  Communication plan developed and 

implemented
by 2021

 

Promote innovative and sensitive energy efficiency/renewable energy measures in conservation areas and on listed buildings which preserve and enhance such assets for the needs of existing and future occupants

Partnership /influence action Low  

Builds resilience

Encourages economic sustainability

Enhances health and wellbeing

None Future action 

beyond 2023

Objective 6

Objective 6 - buildings
 ObjectiveAction type CO2 saving potential Co-benefits  Cost
 

Increase buildings resilience to climate change

Indirect action

Partnership /influence action

Low

Improves ecology

Builds relilience

Enhances health and wellbeing

None
Actions for objective 6 - buildings
 ActionAction type CO2 saving potential  Co-benefitsCost 2021-2023 target 
 

Develop local plan policies to ensure climate risks are identified and avoided in new developments, including flood risk and overheating

Indirect action  Low  

Improves ecology

Builds relilience

Enhances health and wellbeing

None   

Local Plan policy in place by Dec 2021 adopted by 2023

 

Work with partners to increase climate change resilience of communities & buildings by understanding the future climate risks within Dorset

Partnership /influence action  Low  

Improves ecology

Builds relilience

Enhances health and wellbeing

 None  

Risk Assessment
carried out
by Sept 2022

 

Ensure Emergency Plans are adapted to reflect changing climate risks and are tested and proven fit for purpose

 

Partnership /influence action  None

Improves ecology

Builds relilience

Enhances health and wellbeing

 
None  Lobby paper presented to government 

in 2021

 

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