National Construction Code Proposed Changes
Homes across Australia will be more energy efficient if proposed changes to the National Construction Code are pushed through for 2022.
Consultation has begun on the final tranche of the Australian Building Codes Board’s National Construction Code 2022, which has been flagged as the most substantial change to the residential construction code since 2010.
Proposed changes include raising the thermal performance of homes to a 7-star NatHERS rating, whole-of-home annual energy usage, and improving the provisions for retrofitting on-site renewables and electric vehicle charging equipment on multi-dwelling and commercial buildings.
RMIT University senior lecturer in the Sustainable Building Innovation Lab Dr Trivess Moore welcomed the more stringent energy efficiency requirements, which he said could reduce heating and cooling costs substantially.
Moore said the performance of Australian housing was at least 40 per cent worse than its peers in similar climate zones in many other developed countries.
Stage 1 of the consultation on the NCC 2022 proposed amendments included draft provisions for accessible housing, including wider hallways and reinforced bathroom walls, amendments to allowable lead levels for plumbing products that contact drinking water, egress windows for early childhood centres and primary schools, bushfire protection for non-residential buildings (fire resistance levels of construction materials), and the weatherproofing and waterproofing of commercial buildings.
HIA executive director of building policy Simon Croft said the 2022 code would be most the significant change to the national building code since its inception.
Consultation on Stage 2 of the National Construction Code 2022 relating to the energy efficiency measures closes on October 17.