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Policy update from CE National – January 12th 2024

Government publishes roadmap for biggest expansion of nuclear power for 70 years

Today (11 January), the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero published plans for the biggest expansion of nuclear power for 70 years with the aim of reducing electricity bills, support the creation of thousands of jobs and improve the UK’s energy security – including exploring building a “major new power station” and investing in advanced nuclear fuel production. The Civil Nuclear Roadmap is intended to give industry certainty of the future direction of the UK’s nuclear programme, in addition to the government’s historic commitment to Sizewell C and plans to further develop small modular reactor technology (SMR). The Government also announced it will invest £300 million in UK production of the fuel required to power high-tech new nuclear reactors, known as HALEU, currently only commercially produced in Russia.

Michael Gove releases a statement launching a consultation on improving the standard of social housing

On Tuesday (9 January), the Secretary of Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities released a statement referencing the death of Awaab Ishak in 20 and announcing the launch of a Government consultation on how the proposed law to improve the quality of private rented social housing should operate.

  

Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities publishes plans to remove barriers to energy efficiency measures in historic homes

Last Wednesday (3 January), the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities published plans to help rollout retrofit measures to pre-1919 builds without making the protected housing “ugly or inappropriate”. This category of housing stock is some of the least energy efficient in the UK, with households paying on average £428 more on energy per year.

Construction output decreased by 0.2% in volume terms in November 2023

Monthly construction update for November 2023

  • Construction output saw a decrease of 0.6% in the three months to November 2023; this came solely from a decrease in new work (3.6% fall), as repair and maintenance increased by 3.8%.
  • Monthly construction output is estimated to have decreased 0.2% in volume terms in November 2023; this follows an upwardly revised decrease of 0.4% in October 2023, with the monthly value in level terms in November 2023 at £15,571 million.
  • The decrease in monthly output came solely from a decrease in new work (2.0% fall), as repair and maintenance increased by (2.1%).
  • At the sector level, three out of the nine sectors saw a fall in November 2023, with the main contributors to the monthly decrease seen in private new housing and infrastructure new work, which decreased 3.9% and 2.0%, respectively.
  • Anecdotal evidence suggested effects of adverse weather, including heavy rainfall and strong winds in November 2023, led to delays in planned work.

Read the full report here.

Download the ONS Construction update here.

Cladding Safety Scheme

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has published updated guidance in relation to the Cladding Safety Scheme (CSS).

The CSS is for buildings that are 11m+ outside London and 11-18m inside London. The Scheme provides funding for the remediation or mitigation of the fire safety risks linked to unsafe external wall systems on residential or mixed-use buildings where the responsible developer cannot be identified.

It is a requirement of the CSS that applications be supported by a Fire Risk Appraisal of External Wall construction (FRAEW) undertaken by an approved fire risk assessor. If you do not already have a FRAEW, when you apply, you will be provided with a contact list.

More information can be found here.

National Planning Policy Framework (20 December)

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has published an update to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

The NPPF was revised in response to the Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill: reforms to national planning policy consultation on 19 December 2023 and sets out the government’s planning policies for England and how these are expected to be applied.

This revised framework replaces the previous NPPF published in March 2012, revised in July 2018, updated in February 2019, revised in July 2021 and updated in September 2023.

The revised National Planning Policy Framework and planning practice guidance to support the framework are available online.

Further information can be found here.

 

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