Philip Box, Public Affairs and Policy Officer at the UK Green Building Council, said:

“We welcome the direction of the measures presented in the White Paper to promote quality in the built environment, simplify the planning system and improve both accessibility and enforcement. Planning has to date been part of a wider system that has not delivered the standards of development we need in order to effectively tackle the built environment’s contributions to climate change and biodiversity decline, or promote social value.

“At present, there is little detail on how many of these proposals, such as design codes or new Local Plans, will specifically support or enhance sustainability across the sector. In addition, despite references to achieving net zero ready buildings by 2050 and introducing the Future Homes Standard, there is not a comprehensive recognition within the White Paper of the role of the planning system as a key strategic vehicle for decarbonising the economy and enhancing climate resilience.

As we highlight in our response, this must be rectified by ensuring that these reforms align clearly with the Climate Change Act, and that the planning system helps drive a strategic approach to tackle the climate crisis, promote social value, enhance climate resilience and reverse biodiversity decline.”

Read UKGBC’s full response here.