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  • by Karma Loveday

Housing secretary orders regulations review to up water efficiency in new homes

The government is to review building regulations in spring to empower local planning authorities to introduce tighter water efficiency standards in new homes.

The news came just before Christmas in a ministerial statement by housing secretary, Michael Gove. He made the announcement as part of an update on plans for the expansion of Cambridge. By 2040, the city is envisaged to have a new urban quarter including over new 150,000 homes – but water scarcity is a serious constraint.

Gove said, ahead of the review, “In areas of serious water stress, where water scarcity is inhibiting the adoption of Local Plans or the granting of planning permission for homes, I encourage local planning authorities to work with the Environment Agency and delivery partners to agree standards tighter than the 110 litres per day that is set out in current guidance.”

He said a new development corporation will be established for Cambridge, “which we will arm with the right leadership and full range of powers necessary to marshal this huge project over the next two decades, regardless of the shifting sands of Westminster”.


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