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Timber housing company welcomes Cooper’s announcement

3 October 2007

Housing and Planning Minister Yvette Cooper has this week called on developers to refocus their efforts to deliver the eco homes of the future as Communities and Local Government published revised guidance to help the construction industry respond to the challenge of meeting the zero carbon homes target.

Housing and Planning Minister Yvette Cooper has this week called on developers to refocus their efforts to deliver the eco homes of the future as Communities and Local Government published revised guidance to help the construction industry respond to the challenge of meeting the zero carbon homes target.
Pinewood Structures, the leading timber frame manufacturer welcomes this announcement as it is the only supplier in the UK to be awarded A and A+ ratings in the Building Research Establishment’s Green Guide which means developers using Pinewood Structures’ products will maximize their sustainability scores in the Code for Sustainable Homes.

In her announcement, Yvette Cooper said: "We need to build more affordable homes but we also need to cut carbon emissions at the same time. That is why we are working with industry to meet the zero carbon challenge including through financial incentives.

"The ambition for all new homes to be zero carbon by 2016 is a challenging one. We need to work in close co-operation with housebuilders and the green technology industry to can achieve."

By specifying Pinewood Structures’ products developers can gain credit points towards their score in the Code for Sustainable Homes sponsored by the NHBC (National House-Building Council). An A+ rating indicates the products with the lowest environmental impact.

Pinewood Structures’ products gained:

Roofs: A+ rating under the Green Guide criteria = 3 credits
Floors: A+ rating under the Green Guide criteria = 3 credits
External Walls: A rating under the Green Guide criteria = 2 credits
Internal Walls: A rating under the Green Guide criteria = 2 credits

The total number of credits acquired is 10 leading to a score of 2.7 points. A client specifying Pinewood Structures’ timber frame system and also using an A or A+ rated window would acquire a minimum of 12 credits leading to a score of 3.6 points.

Along with the company’s recent Chain of Custody certification, the Green Guide rating allows Pinewood Structures’ customers to maximize their sustainability scores. These two accreditations, combined with the inherent sound insulation and thermal efficiency benefits of timber frame, allows those using Pinewood structures’ products to significantly increase their Code for Sustainable Homes scores. The Code is the national standard for the sustainable design and construction of new homes and is a key driver towards the zero carbon house.

The Green Guide provides guidance for specifiers, designers and their clients on the relative environmental impacts in terms of carbon usage for elements such as roofs, walls and floors and is based on life cycle assessments developed by the BRE and funded by the Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions.

Pinewood Structures’ managing director Geoff Arnold said: “Once again sustainable housing is at the top of the agenda. We already know that timber frame is the most sustainable main stream build technology. We welcome the Minister’s announcement and hope that it encourages developers to look towards timber frame as the solution to sustainable housing. Specifying Pinewood Structures’ Green Guide products will also allow many clients access to funding and enable them to demonstrate compliance to the criteria for Sustainable Homes.”

Pinewood Structures is based in Bedfordshire and is a member of the UK Timber Frame Association. Pinewood Structures employs over 160 people and is ranked in the top five of timber frame specialists in the UK. Pinewood Structures’ customers include major contractors and housing developers such as Taylor Wimpey, St James Group, JLP, Bellway Homes and Persimmon Homes.

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