Industry raises concerns about draft construction code

Monday, 23 July, 2018

Industry raises concerns about draft construction code

The National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA), Lighting Council Australia, the Illuminating Engineering Society and the International Association of Lighting Designers (Australia New Zealand) have expressed concerns about the new draft National Construction Code.

The National Construction Code regulates the design and construction of new buildings and redevelopments across the country.

The new regulations are slated to take effect from July 2019 and will apply to all commercial buildings across Australia, both newly built and redeveloped, that require development approval.

“While energy efficiency is an important objective in the development of policy, we worry that the government has not sufficiently and comprehensively consulted with industry on these changes,” said NECA CEO Suresh Manickam in reference to the proposed draft of the National Construction Code. The concerns of NECA are shared by industry bodies representing manufacturers, suppliers, designers and engineers in the lighting market.

Lighting Council Australia, which represents 100 Australian manufacturers and suppliers of lighting equipment, suggests that it is not a question of whether jobs will be lost, but of how many. “Our industry provides about 5000 manufacturing jobs. There are a further 1000 lighting designers and engineers in the sector,” explained Lighting Council Australia’s David Crossley.

“This proposal has not been properly evaluated and the consultation process was inadequate.”

Trent Dutton, President of the Illuminating Engineering Society (Australia New Zealand), is worried that the changes will have a significant negative effect. “We have seen very little technical data to support the proposal and we suspect that limited assessment has been made of the economic impact of the change on our industry.”

Dutton is also concerned about the impact of the proposal on his company Rubidium Light, a lighting design and engineering company headquartered in Brisbane but operating across Australia.

“I worry that these kinds of increasing government interventions will end up making the places Australians live, work and play become dull, uninspiring and unproductive places.”

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