WALTHAM Forest is to get its first "zero carbon" homes as part of a new development.

Four homes on a new development in Higham Hill, Walthamstow, will feature a range of technologies to reduce CO2 emmissions by 70 per cent so they reach the zero carbon standard.

The scheme as a whole, which includes a further 20 homes, will have 60 per cent CO2 reduction.

It has been developed by Islington and Shoreditch Housing Association (ISHA) and PRP architects in consultation with the council and will be constructed by Mansell.

Measures to reduce carbon emissions are still being finalised, but the homes could have solar roof panels to provide hot water and photovoltaic panels to generate electricity.

The materials used to build the homes will be designed to prevent energy from escaping and heat recovery systems - which recover heat from extraction units - could also be used.

Colin Archer, development director of ISHA, said: "We are delighted that working in partnership with the Council on the proposals for the site has allowed us to develop this innovative scheme.

"We are committed to producing sustainable, low-carbon homes while providing high quality properties which meet the needs of residents.

Construction of the scheme, which will provide affordable rental housing for people in the borough, started earlier this month and is expected to be completed next year.

Councillor Marie Pye, Waltham Forest Council's cabinet member for communities and housing, said: "I am really pleased another sustainable housing scheme is being built in Waltham Forest.

"These new homes will bring more quality, affordable family housing to residents of the borough, whilst making sure that we minimise our impact on the environment."

The zero carbon standard is equivalent to level six of the Code for Sustainable Homes - the national standard for sustainable design and construction of new houses.

The Government has proposed that the zero carbon standard could apply to all new homes from 2016.

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