Energy Efficiency Standards for Residential Buildings

Extract from Hansard
[COUNCIL — Tuesday, 15 March 2011]
p17b-18a
Hon Lynn MacLaren; Hon Simon O'Brien

ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS

Hon LYNN MacLAREN to the Minister for Commerce:

(1) Can the minister confirm that the Building Commission advisory note of February 2010 entitled “BCA
2010—Energy efficiency changes in Western Australia” was correct in advising that the national
provisions for residential buildings would be deferred due to a Western Australian variation?

(2) Given the 12-month deferral was from 1 May 2010 to 1 May 2011, why has the minister announced a
further 12 months’ delay?

(3) Can the minister confirm that the advisory note stated that the national provisions to increase energy
efficiency in all other buildings will commence on 1 May 2010?

(4) Will the minister advise who from the building industry requested sufficient time to adapt to the new
provisions as stated in the advisory note?

(5) During this additional 12-month transitional period will approval authorities, such as local councils,
have the discretion to adopt these new energy efficiency standards?

Hon SIMON O’BRIEN replied:

I thank the honourable member for notice of her question on 22 February. I thought I had already responded to
this question, or perhaps it was just one like it.

Hon Lynn MacLaren: It was similar.

Hon SIMON O’BRIEN: Okay, I will indulge the member again, Mr President.

The PRESIDENT: I cannot remember the exact question, so I suggest you provide an answer if you have one.

Hon SIMON O’BRIEN: Certainly.

(1) Yes.

(2) The WA building regulations allow buildings to be approved under a superseded standard for a period
of 12 months from the date of adoption of the new standard. Thus, a 12-month transition for residential
buildings commences on 1 May 2011, the date of adoption of the six-star standard in Western Australia.

(3) Yes.

(4) The Housing Industry Association and the Master Builders Association in consultation with
government officials in 2009 requested sufficient time for the Western Australian housing industry to
adapt to the new energy efficiency standard for residential buildings.

(5) The WA building regulations currently provide discretion for local government to approve a building
that is compliant with either the intermediate superseded building standard or the current building
standard for a period of up to 12 months.

Mr President, in delivering that answer I notice that there is a potential for ambiguity in the fifth part of the
member’s question, so if I have not addressed her question adequately in that respect, she should feel free to
approach me outside and I will be more than happy to discuss the matter with her further.