Space temperature policy towards net-zero:recommendations from a systematic review of UK HEI heating policies

New, K. and Tyler, A. and Friday, A. and Hazas, M. and Gormally, A. (2022) Space temperature policy towards net-zero:recommendations from a systematic review of UK HEI heating policies. Building Research and Information. ISSN 0961-3218

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The UK government has committed to reducing its carbon emissions to net-zero by 2050. Higher education institutions (HEIs) are high energy users, with the largest proportion of their energy demand for space heating; an area still dominated by carbon-intensive fuels. This research addresses the UK HEI space temperature policy landscape, making direct links between space temperature policy and carbon management, advocating the development of evidence-based policies as a critical tool for reducing carbon emissions within the sector. Sixty-six space temperature policies were reviewed, and five experienced energy managers were interviewed to understand the range, development and use of space temperature policies in UK HEIs. The research identified a lack of consistency across these policies, leading to missed opportunities for making energy and carbon savings. The research highlights gaps in the available data and literature needed to connect policy to its effectiveness, and identifies the use of policy as a defensive tool against complaints rather than an active driver of energy reduction. A series of recommendations are proposed for national and institutional policymakers, suggesting areas for improvement and future research to facilitate effective development and practice in space temperature policy towards net-zero.

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Journal Article
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Building Research and Information
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Export Date: 11 August 2022 Funding details: 19R16P01012 Funding details: Lancaster University Funding details: European Regional Development Fund, ERDF Funding text 1: The authors would like to thank all the UK HEIs who responded to policy requests and expressed interest in the project. We would also like to thank the energy managers who participated in interviews, and the associations which allowed us to post information requests on their websites. Finally, we would like to acknowledge the European Regional Development Fund Grant ‘Low Carbon Lancashire Innovation Hub (19R16P01012)’, and Lancaster University, who funded this work.
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25 Aug 2022 16:20
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2022 01:23