The nitty gritty of Net Zero.
It’s a term we hear again and again. But what does it mean and how does it affect your projects?
First of all, there’s Net Zero and there’s ‘nearly zero energy’ – and you’ll hear us talk about both. A Net Zero, or zero-energy building, is one that exceeds the requirements of Part L of the Building Regs. The building uses less energy (or an equal amount) than it generates. This means the building will have an energy/EPC rating of A+ as a minimum.
A nearly zero energy building has a very high energy performance in line with Part L of the Building Regs. Nearly zero energy buildings get an EPC A or B rating. When this happens, it’s usually possible to get to Net Zero with a few changes.
What makes Viridis different?
Unlike many of our competitors, we guarantee that sustainability is not an expensive word. We believe in ‘cost optimal’ builds. This means getting the balance right between costs and the life cycle of the building. We take into account the cost of installation, operation, maintenance and energy-related investments, such as insulation, windows, heating, lighting, ventilation, air-conditioning and the like and balance them against environmental gain. What this means is achieving the maximum environmental benefit at a sustainable value.
How will I benefit from a Net Zero approach?
Sometimes customers come to us dragging their heels, thinking that sustainability is something they’ve ‘got to do’. But they soon realise that the road to Net Zero is paved with benefits. We call them the three Ps. The first is people. Building sustainably almost always results in happier, more productive and enthusiastic teams. The second is planet. You’ll be creating environmentally sustainable buildings that are part of our children’s and grandchildren’s future. The third, and often the most surprising, is prosperity. Net Zero makes economic sense – better buildings with lower construction, running and maintenance costs.
Is Net Zero building outside my comfort zone?
We hear this a lot. And the short answer is no. We won’t propose that you start building space-age constructions or re-skilling your entire workforce. Everything we do and recommend is grounded in the existing world of construction. Sometimes a small tweak to a traditional method makes a bigger difference to energy performance than a fancy new innovation. Not that we’re against innovations of course, but we like to keep it real.
What if I can’t afford to go Net Zero?
We understand your need to balance sustainability with cost. So we unlock smart savings to help you build more sustainably and stay in the black. You might be surprised to hear that a sustainable, Net Zero building should cost the same to build and operate as a traditional building – often less. We always look for approaches that cost less, use less and are environmentally friendly. Sometimes it’s approaching a traditional method in a different way, sometimes it’s a new technology or material. But we’re always about getting maximum environmental benefit for the best value.
You talk the talk… but do you walk the walk at Viridis?
The answer is yes, always has been, always will be. We live by our values. They’re the foundation of our decision-making and our benchmark for success. Working with people who share our commitment to a greener future really gets our motor running – but we won’t take on a project if it doesn’t fit with who we are.
Being Net Zero is fundamental to our core values as a business and as individuals. Sustainability isn’t what we do – it’s who we are.
There are hundreds of ways we can help you move towards Net Zero while keeping costs down (right down).
Whatever you and your project need, we’ve got you covered. What’s more, we take the time to explain every option open to you in a transparent and non-technical way. So you’re always in control and able to make the most cost-effective and well-informed decisions whilst building greener.
Get in touch about your latest project and let us show you that sustainability is not an expensive word.