Last edited 23 Feb 2021

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BRE Group Researcher Website

Notional building

The Building Regulations set out requirements for specific aspects of building design and construction. Regulation 26 of the building regulations states that 'where a building is erected, it shall not exceed the target CO2 emission rate for the building…'.

The target CO2 emission rate (TER) sets a minimum allowable standard for the energy performance of a building and is defined by the annual CO2 emissions of a notional building of same type, size and shape to the proposed building.

BREEAM UK New Construction, Non-domestic Buildings (United Kingdom), Technical Manual, SD5078: BREEAM UK New Construction 2018 3.0, published by BRE Global Limited, defines a notional building as:

‘A hypothetical building of the same size, shape, orientation and shading as the actual building, with the same activities, zoning and system types and exposed to the same weather data, but with pre-defined specified properties for the building fabric, fittings and services. The notional building is concurrent with the national building regulations for Wales 2014, Northern Ireland 2012 and England 2013. For Scotland 2013, the ‘notional’ building is generated based upon a building designed to meet the 2002 standards and a percentage improvement is applied to define the compliant building target carbon dioxide emission rate (TER).’

--BRE Group

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