Consultation display

Low carbon housing: the challenge

Response to the consultation

Evidence submitted in response to this Consultation

Purpose of the consultation

Terms of reference

To assess the Welsh Government’s progress in relation to low carbon housing and to consider what needs to be done to ensure the Welsh Government achieves its commitments to meet energy efficiency and emissions reductions targets. We will explore:

  • What role can housing can play in Wales’ low carbon transition, including the potential positive impacts on greenhouse gas emissions?
  • The development and availability of technology needed for highly energy efficient housing;
  • What changes are needed to ensure that existing housing stock is as energy efficient as it can be?
  • Whether it is possible and feasible to deliver low carbon, energy positive, affordable housing at scale in Wales and, if so, how this can be achieved;
  • What are the barriers to delivering transformative change in house building in Wales?
  • What is the role of Ofgem and the national grid in enabling grid evolution to accommodate new types of housing, and what are the challenges presented by decentralised energy supply?
  • Whether Wales has the requisite skills to facilitate and enable change in the housing sector;
  • What changes are needed to Building Regulations in Wales to accelerate progress towards ‘near zero’ energy standards and beyond?
  • How communities can be planned and shaped to be more energy efficient and low carbon (including examples of good practice in Wales and further afield). 


The Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee has a remit to scrutinise the Welsh Government’s delivery of policy and spending on climate change; energy; natural resources management; planning; animal welfare and agriculture. Our predecessor Committee of the Fourth Assembly carried out an inquiry into ‘A Smarter Energy Future for Wales’. It made a number of recommendations around housing and building regulations, including:

  • The Welsh Government must urgently revise Building Regulations to ensure that all new houses are built to ‘near zero’ energy standards.
  • Wales must, on completion of a successful trial of SOLCER type (low carbon and energy positive) homes at scale, move to extending its energy efficiency requirements for new homes beyond ‘near zero’ carbon to a level of efficiency where surplus energy is produced.

The Welsh Government accepted both recommendations in its response.

The Committee would like to return to these two recommendations in particular and carry out an inquiry with a view to informing policy development in this area.

Disclosure of information

Please ensure that you have considered the Assembly’s policy on disclosure of information before submitting information to the Committee.

Contact details

Should you wish to speak to someone regarding this consultation, please use the below contact details:

Climate Change, Environment and Rural Affairs Committee
Welsh Parliament
Cardiff Bay
CF99 1SN

Telephone: 0300 200 6565