We appreciate the opportunity to comment on the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB)’s National Construction Code (NCC) 2022 Public Comment Draft (PCD).
The NCC is updated every 3 years and this latest draft edition features some significant amendments. Our submission focused on Volume One – Building Code of Australia Class 2 to 9 buildings and Volume Two – Building Code of Australia Class 1 and 10 buildings and how they relate to energy efficiency in particular.
As outlined in our submission, we support the proposed changes to improve energy performance standards for new homes and apartments. The revised objectives are a welcome recognition of the multiple benefits of improving the energy efficiency of a home, and supported by a growing and substantial evidence base demonstrating the link to high energy bills and poor health outcomes.
We also see the 2022 changes to the National Construction Code to improve the thermal efficiency of homes as a first step along the policy pathway outlined in the Trajectory for Low Energy Buildings to meet a net zero target. Along with the need to better integrate consumers’ energy assets, like solar PV and batteries, the 2022 changes should be seen as the minimum standard, and one that industry should endeavour to better.
These changes should continue to recognise that the housing and energy markets exist to serve consumers, and so should place consumers at the front of policy-making and regulatory decisions.
Comments provided will inform the final version of the NCC 2022 for regulatory consideration in September 2022.