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How We Built Britain
Building Britain sees Dick Strawbridge of It’s Not Easy Being Green explore the environmental credentials of buildings in Cornwall. In the television show Dick looks at some of the local innovative architectural alternatives.
As part of the BBC's 'How We Built Britain' campaign, Cornish resident Dick Strawbridge explores the environmental credentials of buildings in the South West.
Dick looks at some of the environmentally unsound building developments that continue to be constructed, and discovers some of the innovative architectural alternatives that puts Cornwall at the cutting edge of green building design in the UK.
The Eden Project
Armed with a thermal imaging camera, Dick finds out just how bad our current, poorly-insulated houses are for the environment and visits some new super-eco homes to see how much better they could be.
He also carries out an eco-audit on Plymouth’s largest new retail development, Drake's Circus; visits Jubilee Wharf - a radical-looking Zero Energy Development in Cornwall; and finds out how The Eden Project used pioneering green construction techniques to build its new education centre.
Dick uses the local BBC programme to discuss the government’s introduction of 'The Code for Sustainable Homes', which is part of their plan to make all new homes carbon zero by 2016.
However, he discovers that private developers are currently exempt from rating their new homes with a rating from the code whilst 'social' developers like housing associations have to comply with the code and get a rating.
The government says that in 2008 it 'intends to propose' that it will be mandatory for all new homes to be rated in this way.
Laurence will be presenting the debate
The code has the potential to be quite a powerful stimulus to move the construction industry towards greener homes and sustainable building methods and materials too – but at the moment it's not clear whether the construction companies that build the bulk of housing in the UK will have to comply with it.
The programme will be broadcast on BBC1 on Monday 18 June at 22.35.
On Wednesday 20 June BBC Radio Cornwall's Laurence Reed will be holding a debate to look at the various issues covered in the television show. Dick Strawbridge will be a guest on the phone in, along with a local architect and planner.
If you're unable to take part on the phone, use our form below to send in your question via the form below. You will be able to hear the whole debate again on this page after 3pm on Wednesday 20 June.
last updated: 21/06/07