The Government must take steps to ensure that the way we build our homes is helping to meet New Zealand’s climate change targets, the Green Party said.
Responding to the release of the Commerce Commission draft market study into residential building supplies, the Green Party said the Government must take action to drive innovation so we can finally move away from old school methods to an approach that will deliver the warm, dry homes New Zealanders deserve.
“New Zealand’s building sector has a crucial role to play in helping to accelerate the transition to a low carbon future for Aotearoa New Zealand - but driving innovation in green buildings needs Government support,” says the Green Party’s buildings and construction spokesperson, Julie Anne Genter.
“The Greens have been pushing for bold action on climate change and for more new homes to be built. Let’s do both, together.
“Right now we have an opportunity to rethink the way we design, build and use our homes so that they have a positive impact on our climate and natural environment.
“In the short term this means taking action to ensure the products we import meet international standards that are equivalent or better than the NZ Building Code.
“In the medium to long term, we need to be smarter about how we create new markets and drive innovation in green building products.
“The Government could work with Kāinga Ora and rethink its procurement contracts in order catalyse innovation in offsite manufacture that enables scale and support multiple providers.
“This will create more housing for those in most need, and bring benefits to the whole building sector by helping more suppliers to enter the market and get established.
“We’ve seen a similar approach work with Warmer Kiwi Homes, which was started by former Green MP Jeanette Fitzsimmons as energy spokesperson in 2007.
“Thanks to the concerted efforts of the Green Party, this programme has been continued by every Government since and has helped create a well-functioning insulation market with a range of suppliers producing high quality and affordable products.
“Over and over we’re seeing monopolists make excessive profits in a range of sectors, and use similar approaches to stifle competition. Now is the time to change how we do things to put climate change at the centre of how we build and use buildings in Aotearoa,” Julie Anne Genter said.