With just a few months to go until the arrival of the 18th Edition of the IET Wiring Regulations, Bureau Veritas is calling on construction industry to embrace the changes brought by the new Part 8 section – stating it is an important step forward in the UK’s green agenda.
As one of the most successful countries in its carbon reductions, the UK continues to make huge headway in its target towards reducing emissions by 80% on 1990 levels before 2050 – with the adoption of more energy efficient solutions integral to this.
Yet until this point, there has been no official best practice regulation around the design and installation of energy efficient technology – meaning it has been all too common for installations to be completed with little regard to energy use and emissions.
Cue the arrival of the 18th Edition this July (2018) which, for the first time, will go beyond just looking at safety requirements to include a section dedicated to energy efficiency in installation – a move which Bureau Veritas states will bring renewed focus on the energy efficiency plight.
Mahendra Mistry, technical manager for electrical systems at Bureau Veritas, said: “Although it’s been the subject of much debate, with some stating that the Wiring Regulations should be confined solely to safety requirements, the introduction of an energy efficient section is an vital step forward in ensuring the most current and relevant guidance possible.
“Until now, energy efficiency has all too often been a ‘nice to have’, with it all too common for installations to be chopped and changed, with little regard to the distribution of electricity or potential losses. However, by making energy efficiency a primary focus from the offset, we can look to ensure that each and every installation is completely as safety and sustainably as possible.”
Comprising 25 pages, the new Part 8 section provides guidance on ensuring the energy-efficiency of electrical installations with a view to lessening environmental impact, reducing energy losses, using energy only when required and potentially at a lower tariff, reducing maintenance by ensuring equipment is installed correctly and enhancing life-time efficiency.
The consensus is that the change could help coerce increased demand for smart solutions, such as electric vehicles, LEDs, power factor correction and the like, while, in turn, opening up new business opportunities for electrical contractors.
Mahendra adds: “As an industry, we still have a huge job to do in terms of not just meeting carbon reduction commitments but ensuring a sustainable infrastructure; which Part 8 will help to more adequately address. Indeed, it may mean more change for construction sector and contractors to get to grips with but it is an important regulatory reform which not only aid our sustainability plight but create new opportunity.”