Green Building Passports: a review for Scotland

Reducing carbon emissions from homes and buildings is one of Scotland’s priorities towards meeting climate change targets. This report aims to provide policy makers with an understanding of the purpose, structure and use of Green Building Passports (GBPs), along with the main barriers and opportunities when considering their possible introduction in Scotland.

For the purposes of this report, GBPs, also referred to as Building Renovation Passports/Plans (BRPs), comprise: comprehensive building information (logbook); bespoke and staged renovation guidance (renovation plan/roadmap); and, key supporting information for energy efficiency improvement (such as available loans/subsidies).

Main findings
  • It is possible to draw on research, development and implementation experience of a variety of schemes in the UK, Europe and internationally to understand more about what Green Building Passports (GBPs) are, and what they can offer. Information available relates to developing frameworks for unified approaches; delivery of pilot projects; management of mandatory and voluntary government-led digital platforms; and delivery of government-supported, industry-led ‘one-stop-shop’ models.
  • The introduction of GBPs is primarily driven by a need to provide property owners with high quality, comprehensive and user-friendly information on energy efficiency and appropriate renovation guidance.
  • For some properties, detailed renovation guidance will be needed; this is considered especially important when improvements are likely to require a transition from relatively simple energy efficiency measures to requiring more complex measures.
  • Building Renovation Passports/Plans (BRPs) have not yet reached maturity and many challenges have been encountered with implementation. There are complexities with integrating data from various sources that could potentially take significant time and resource to overcome.
  • All stakeholders highlighted that clear distinction is needed between who owns and who should have access to building data (i.e. personal data vs property data). UK stakeholders have published recommendations for data governance good practice. Suitable pathways for data to be shared or made publicly available are also still being investigated in various initiatives.