Surrey County Council (SCC) has committed via its climate change strategy to achieve Net Zero Carbon for Council Operations by 2030 with the County of Surrey achieving Net Zero Carbon by 2050, as well as an ongoing commitment to improving wider environmental sustainability - which includes creating low carbon, healthy homes for our residents that reduce emissions, have lower running costs and improve the wellbeing of our community.
This development has incorporated these goals throughout the design, and some of the ways these will be achieved are listed below:
A Fabric First Approach
The new homes at former Horley Library site are designed to minimise heat loss and maximise airtightness through a combination of measures, including high performance insulation, high performance windows and high-quality interfaces between different building elements. This means that the buildings will need less energy to heat in winter and cool in summer, resulting in lower carbon emissions and reduced heating costs.
All heating and cooking will be via electric appliances. The reason for this is that the carbon intensity of electricity supplied from the grid is significantly lower than that of natural gas.
Low Carbon, Low-cost Heating Solutions
Electric heat pumps are currently the preferred solution to supply heating and hot water for the new buildings. These have a significantly lower carbon footprint than gas boilers, are highly efficient and, when combined with the low energy demands resulting from the Fabric First approach, will help to manage the energy costs for residents. In addition to these measures the buildings will benefit from underfloor heating with smart controls, which allows residents to manage and reduce the energy for lighting and heating in their homes.
Maximising on-site generation of Renewable Energy
Generating electricity using renewable energy technology such as solar photovoltaic (PV) panels will further reduce carbon emissions and help to achieve operational Net Zero. The roofs of the townhouses are proposed as a suitable location for PV panels.
Sustainable Use of Water Resources
Water use in appliances, white goods and for bathing/showering has a cost and carbon implication for residents, as well as wider implications for an increasingly scarce resource. Low volume WC flushes and low flow taps and showers will be installed to keep water use to a minimum.
The landscape design also seeks to ensure effective surface water management with measures to alleviate flood risk, promote irrigation and groundwater recharge, and support green infrastructure. Sustainable Drainage System (SuDs) approaches and measures have been incorporated into the design.
We intend that the energy performance of these buildings will meet LETI standards for small scale housing. This means we can demonstrate that our design results in energy efficient buildings that have lower carbon emissions and reduced heating costs for our residents.