On a blustery chilly September day in Edinburgh, it is easy to forget that July saw the hottest global month on record, and that climate change is a very stark reality for a large percentage of the global population, even though our own microclimate is somewhat cooler.
We have all become accustomed to factoring in the environmental impact of our daily decisions around travel, food choices, and even clothes shopping. But for homeowners and renters alike, our homes, which account for the majority of our personal wealth, can also have a significant impact on our carbon footprint.
While making the eco choice, such as jumping on the bike rather than the car, might be easy and obvious, how we can make the green choice around where we live isn't always clear. There is a lot of jargon out there, and even the most knowledgeable people can find it difficult to understand things like Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR), photovoltaic panels, and thermal massing.
It is often quoted that the built environment accounts for 40% of all carbon emissions. But how is that broken down, and how much of it do our homes actually account for?
In 2022, the UK residential sector or "homes" actually accounted for 17% of all carbon emissions (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, 2023 (March)) - note that this is predominantly the gas consumption for heating and cooking, as electricity consumption is accounted for under energy in the statistics.
This may seem daunting or depressing, but if you look at it from another angle, it is a huge opportunity for everyone involved in the housing market to make a real impact in the choices they make around housing.
To mark Scotland's Climate Week, we're introducing our blog series around greener home choices, we will explain some of the complex statistics and offer simple tips on how we can all reduce the carbon footprint of our homes.
Specifically, we will cover the following topics:
- The benefits of living in a new build development from a sustainability perspective
- How to choose a green new build development
- The financial benefits of buying a green new build property
- The future of sustainability in new builds in Scotland
- Tips for making your older home greener
To speak to one of our New Homes team about our available Green Developments, please call us on 0131 243 3858.