Introducing: DGA Life

DGA’s new sustainability service – lifting the veil on embodied carbon, highlighting savings from low energy homes, and more.

It’s time for the building sector to stop kicking climate change into the long grass. The decades of time we have had to change our fossil-fuel based infrastructure has shrunk to 11 years. As we embark on a new year and considering the pandemic, a new way of living, DGA recognises that the construction industry has to play its part in battling the climate crisis. We think this should start by changing our way of thinking from short term gratification to long term forward planning.

Using guidance set out from the RICS and internationally agreed standards DGA can proudly present its life cycle costing service, spelling out the true cost of your build, including maintenance, operation and end of life costs. We also calculate the embodied carbon of your building using the latest life cycle assessment technology endorsed by BREEAM. DGA Life add data to your design decisions, making optioneering for the greenest build possible a synch.

The construction industry is responsible for around 40% of all climate emissions in the UK. In order to for the UK to adequately respond to the climate crisis and build a safe, renewable infrastructure for future generations, our entire approach to building needs radical evolution. The buildings constructed today are likely to last at least 60 years. This means any building built today that does not comply with low energy standards will have to be retrofitted in order to meet targets set by the UK government for 2050. Additionally, as it stands, 27 million homes in the UK will need to be deeply retrofitted at an average expense of £26,300.

So, what is the true cost of construction? For a long time, it was considered that capital costs and return on investment were the most important considerations. However, buildings are much more than just their construction, they are homes to be lived in, offices to be worked in, buildings for the community to interact in. The average person spends £686,125 on household bills over their lifetimeUtilities and maintenance costs will often dwarf the capital cost of a house over its lifetime.

With impact of Covid-19, more households are concerned about their bills, and as the cost of heating rises, so will the number of people in fuel poverty. Considering £9.5 billion a year worth of energy is wasted, most of which is in the form of heat energy, increasing the efficiency of homes could give a welcome boost to the UK economy whilst giving low income households one less thing to worry about.

To fulfil the objectives of the Paris Agreement, there must be a rapid, fundamental change to our infrastructure. This must come with a just transition with no one left behind. Sounds overwhelming, but the past few weeks have proved that in 2020 we can achieve anything when industry works together towards a common goal.

Get in touch with us on social media to share your stories of how you are tackling the climate crisis.

Read more about our sustainability services here.