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How are Net Zero Homes Being Delivered in Yorkshire?

4 min

c. Luke Porter
Two funds are aiming to support the building of net zero homes in York and North Yorkshire. Quadrant Smart explores how these homes will provide people with sustainable and low carbon living.

The first of the two funds is The York and North Yorkshire Brownfield Housing Fund. This fund is aiming to support the building of up to 1,000 homes.

While, the second fund, The York and North Yorkshire Net Zero Fund is offering £7 million of funding to develop and deliver a pipeline of net zero projects in the region. The funding is open to both private and public sector organisations.

Delivering Affordable And Sustainable Housing Is The Priority

Aiming to unlock development on brownfield land, The York and North Yorkshire Brownfield Housing Fund will see building start before March 2025.

Priority will be given to schemes that help deliver affordable, accessible and low carbon housing, creating sustainable and high-quality places.

With the focus also on sustainability, The York and North Yorkshire Net Zero Fund has £1 million for idea to investor-ready net zero projects, with £6 million more for net zero projects that otherwise would not happen.

Schemes aim to support York and North Yorkshire’s Routemap to Carbon Negative, York’s Climate Change Strategy and the forthcoming North Yorkshire Council Climate Change Strategy.

Becoming The First Carbon-negative Region Is North Yorkshire’s Aim

North Yorkshire County Council’s Leader, Councillor Carl Les, explained that it is essential to tackle both the housing crisis and climate change and funding will support this: “The need to tackle climate change along with the construction of more affordable housing are two of the most pressing issues which we face in North Yorkshire.

“The opportunities presented through the millions of pounds available in these two funds will be vital in helping us address these challenges.”

He continued to express that to tackle the current housing crisis, more affordable homes need to be built: “With the launch of the new North Yorkshire Council on April 1, we are committed to ensuring more affordable homes are built for communities across the county with new planning policies set to be adopted to help us achieve that.

“The need to address the threat of climate change is also at the centre of the new council’s policymaking. We will be embarking on a public consultation to help shape a new strategy to achieve our goals for net zero carbon emissions and ultimately to become the first carbon-negative region in the country.”

I would urge anyone who qualifies for the funding to consider applying to help us address these hugely important issues that will benefit both residents and businesses alike across North Yorkshire.

Projects Will Be Ready To Be Delivered From December 2023

The funding forms part of the York and North Yorkshire devolution deal and is subject to the deal securing necessary approvals. If devolution is agreed upon, the funds will be administered by a new Mayoral Combined Authority.

Seeing the devolution agreed upon will allow local needs to be targeted, help councils realise the main problems a specific community is facing and see decisions taken at a more appropriate level.

Realising what local needs are the most important to be targetted is essential, as councils can understand their communities better. However, running this may mean extra costs.

A decision to open a call whilst approvals for the devolution deal remain outstanding was made by the Joint Committee for devolution, which includes leaders from City of York and North Yorkshire County Council. This will ensure that projects receiving investment will have full approval and are ready to deliver from December 2023.

Leader of City of York Council, Councillor Keith Aspden, said that the funding is an important step towards the transition to becoming carbon-negative: “Although the devolution consultation process is continuing with the final proposals to be considered by councillors, it’s important that we make progress on bigger programmes. This includes the housing and net zero projects where we have successfully secured the offer of significant funding.

“Both schemes can help our city and the region build more quality housing, take another step towards the goal of becoming carbon-negative, and also accelerate action as part of our Climate Change Strategy.”

I would encourage private and public sector partners to submit their ideas to be a part of York and North Yorkshire’s ambitious future plans.

Prior to any Mayoral Combined Authority forming, the investment process will be administered by the York & North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (Y&NY LEP). Final approval for funding applications could take place from July/August 2023 with delivery expected from December 2023.