Update In Energy Efficiency Rules Australia: Moving From 6 To 7 Star
For those unaware of the recent update in energy efficiency rules, I’ll give you a brief rundown of what is happening. I’m Simon, General Manager of Sustainable Homes Melbourne. As it stands at the moment, the minimum standard energy rating requirements for households, or other residential structures, is pinned at 6 stars – however, according to the National Construction Code for the upcoming year, (2023) energy rating requirements are set to increase to 7 stars.
According to the National Construction Code for the upcoming year, (2023) energy rating requirements are set to increase to 7 stars.
Well, now you are up to date with what is happening, let me explain the significance behind it. To do this, let me introduce you to NatHERS – the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme.
The ratings, published by the scheme every year, serve to play a role as the facilitator for comparisons between the energy efficiency of older residential structures as compared to those which are relatively newer.
The higher the rating of the structure, the less energy is required to regulate the internal temperature of the structure and keep it suitable for its residents. Therefore, a move from the previous 6-star rating to the new 7-star rating would mean that a smaller amount of energy would be utilized for home utilities – this lower energy would translate into cheaper costs for the residents of the household.
There is a vast range of different benefits generally associated with a rise in the minimum standard energy ratings. The very first benefit is especially appealing for all those individuals who care about the environment and promote eco-friendly practices; The move from a 6-star rating to a 7-star rating is set to reduce carbon emissions by just under 80 million tons over the next three decades.
For those of you looking to save a bit of money, the rating increase directly translates, in full-electric homes, to a fall in energy bills by up to $1000 a year – it may not be much, but it is something. For those of you excited by the previous benefit, the next will get you buzzing; the increase in required rating would reduce household energy consumption by up to 25%, meaning that you’d be staving off an extra 25% off of energy bills every month.
Okay, so now we know about the legal requirement stipulating an increase in the rating, let’s talk about how we plan to get there – this is where the 7-star homes program comes in. This program is essentially predicated upon providing households and businesses across the supply chain with the ability to ensure energy-efficient homes. The program facilitates the transition to this new rating in several different ways.
- Firstly, the program offers partial refunds on the upgrade costs to lessen the financial burden on households or businesses.
- Additionally, the program facilitates the training of all the entities involved in the process to ensure that households and businesses carry the capabilities to provide energy-efficient homes.
Australia needs more energy-efficient homes. Residential carbon emissions are among the top five contributors to greenhouse gas emissions within Australia, and as such, the responsibility is cast upon us to make sure that our homes are more environmentally friendly. Furthermore, several studies have concluded that increasing the energy efficiency ratings would contribute to households saving more money, as well as being able to pay off their mortgages in a shorter amount of time as a result of reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
The recent updates in the national energy code may be tedious and relatively expensive to implement, but the long-term benefit that they provide outweigh any of the costs that they require. Reduced energy bills, increased savings, reduced carbon emissions – a cleaner, happier Australia.
Until next time.
Sustainable Homes Melbourne
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