BFF hosts debate on retrofitting existing housing stock to reduce their carbon footprint

The challenging targets for reducing the carbon footprint of this country’s housing stock over the coming years together with the current economic climate mean that attention is turning to appropriate methods to retrofit existing houses. Burrell Foley Fischer LLP hosted representatives of all sections of the housing industry, Clients, Registered Social Landlords, Local Authorities, Designers and Contractors for a debate on best practice.

The event began with a presentation on a project to retrofit a Victorian terraced house in Haringey in collaboration with the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and the University College London. One of a series of projects being sponsored by the TSB to demonstrate deep cuts in carbon emissions and exemplar energy efficient measures in UK social housing. The Energy Saving Trust is working in partnership with each of the projects to collect data from each of the retrofitted houses, including internal and external temperature, humidity and CO2 levels. This data will then be assimilated to form a database which will be made available to researchers, social landlords and energy companies to ensure that the most cost effective technologies are employed in future retrofits. There followed a lively debate with everybody very interested in the materials and details being developed to achieve a high air-tightness in an existing building and how these can be used to give an economically viable solution.