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Recent updates to Approved Documents

by on June 22, 2022

On 15 June 2022, changes were made to the Approved Documents which make up the Building Regulation requirements. The changes effect Approved Document F (Ventilation) and L (Conservation of fuel and power), while also introducing Approved Document O and Approved Document S. The new documents, O and S, focus on overheating in buildings and infrastructure for the charging of electric vehicles respectively.

The change in requirements comes alongside a wider aim of reducing the UK’s carbon emissions, with a goal of becoming net-zero by 2050. This will be aided by a 30 per cent reduction in carbon emissions in new build homes and 27 per cent in new commercial buildings as a result of the adjustments. The aim is to create a shift towards a greener built environment and eco-friendly planning system. 

Building work will have to adhere to the new building regulations if the initial notice is submitted after the 15 June 2022. If an initial notice is submitted before 15 June 2022 and work begins before 15 June 2023 then the previous building regulations will apply. Both the new and previous are available through the relevant Approved Document pages on the Planning Portal website. 

The changes are as follows: 

Current documents 

  • Volume 1: Ventilation for Dwellings 
  • Volume 2: Ventilation for Buildings Other than Dwellings 
  • Volume 1: Energy Efficiency for Dwellings 
  • Volume 2: Energy Efficiency for Buildings Other than Dwellings 

New documents 

Focuses on overheating in domestic properties or similar commercial premises such as student accommodation. The relevant dwellings should aim to limit unwanted solar gains in summer and provide the means to remove heat from inside the property. 

Focuses on Infrastructure for the charging of electric vehicles, applying to new buildings, material change of use, major renovations and mixed use. The documents require the related works to include the installation of an EV charger or cable routes with the ability to provide the relevant supply. 

These changes provide a vital shift towards greener planning and building services, acting as a healthy step forwards into the future of planning and net-zero. 

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