The supply of affordable homes must be increased to help tackle the housing crisis, but they must be built to high environmental standards and situated in the ‘right place’, Friends of the Earth said today, ahead of publication of a Labour-commissioned housing review, expected tomorrow (Thursday 16 October 2014).

The environment charity said in particular that rising energy prices and the urgent need to tackle climate change meant it was essential to ensure all new homes are super-energy efficient.

Last year Labour set up a commission, chaired by Sir Michael Lyons, to “draw up a road map that will set out the changes to housing and planning policies and practice that are required to deliver the new homes and communities we need”.

Friends of the Earth, which published a new policy briefing today, is calling for a major overhaul of housing policy to ensure all our homes are warm and affordable and have high environmental standards. This overhaul must include both new and existing homes, infrastructure such as transport, shops and services, and access to nature.

Friends of the Earth’s Head of Policy Mike Childs said:

House Construction by Paul Francis

By Paul Francis

“Urgent action is needed to tackle the shortage of affordable homes, but any new construction must not lead to significant increases in carbon pollution or damage nature.

“A radical overhaul of housing policy is also urgently needed. This must include new and existing homes, water and energy efficiency, access to nature and the prioritisation of public transport.

“Britain’s housing stock must be future-proofed to deal with a world facing rising energy prices and the threat of catastrophic climate change.”

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