All new development will be required to demonstrate how it minimises resource consumption, minimises energy consumption compared to the current minimum required under part L of the Building Regulations, and how it is located and designed to withstand the longer term impacts of climate change. All developments are encouraged to incorporate on site renewable and / or decentralised renewable or low carbon energy sources, especially in those areas with substation capacity issues. The most appropriate technology for the site and the surrounding area should be used, and proposals should have regard to the North Norfolk Design Guide.

All new dwellings will be required to achieve at least a two star rating under the Code for Sustainable Homes. This requirement will rise over the plan period and by 2010 new dwellings will achieve at least a three star rating and by 2013 new dwellings will achieve at least a four star rating. These standards require consideration of issues such as:

  • orientation to maximise solar gain;
  • use of low water volume fittings and grey water recycling;
  • high levels of insulation; and
  • adequate provision for separation and storage of waste for recycling.

Development proposals over 1,000 square metres or 10 dwellings (new build or conversions) will be required to include on-site renewable energy technology to provide for at least 10% of predicted total energy usage. By 2013 this requirement will rise to at least 20%. These proposals will be supported by an energy consumption statement (xviii).

Where site conditions are particularly suitable, and for developments over 100 dwellings, on-site renewable energy should provide for at least 20% of predicted total energy usage, rising to at least 30% by 2013, and provision of zero carbon dwellings (xix) will be encouraged.

(xviii) Advice on what should be included in an energy consumption statement is provided in the glossary the North Norfolk Design Guide and the London Renewables Toolkit; see ‘Integrating renewable energy into developments: Toolkit for planners, developers and consultants’, Faber Maunsell September 2004

(xix) Defined in The DCLG Consultation on ‘Building a Greener Future: towards Zero Carbon Development’ as ‘over a year the net carbon emissions from energy use in the home would be zero’. Therefore the amount of energy taken from the national grid is less than or equal to the amount put back through renewable technologies.