EU regulations set out rules for buildings’ energy consumption with Britain signed up to the 2010 Energy Performance of Buildings Directive.
There is not currently a requirement to retrofit insulation but if you reroof or re-clad a building you are required to upgrade insulation
Cladding is often used to improve energy efficiency and it is thought there could be up to 30,000 buildings in the UK fitted with similar cladding to that used on Grenfell Tower.
Foam boards coated in zinc rainproof sheets were spaced across the 24-storey building as part of the refurbishment.
At least 17 people died in the Grenfell Tower fire
Express.co.uk asked Geoff Wilkinson, MD of Wilkinson Construction Consultants, if EU laws on improving energy efficiency have any impact on building renovations in the UK.
He said: “In short yes the laws did – there is not currently a requirement to retrofit insulation but if you reroof or re-clad a building you are required to upgrade insulation providing it’s technically and economically possible to do so.”
“Once spread via cladding, the fire could have caught on curtains blowing through windows left open on a hot summer’s night.”
Grenfell Action Group said their concerns about safety went unanswered.
Grenfell Tower before the refurbishment
It concluded that cladding should be non-combustible or not pose an unacceptable level of risk to tenants.
Local activist Piers Thompson said “the entire fascia went up like it was paper and tinder and balsa wood”.
Rydon, the firm that carried out the Grenfell Tower refurbishment work, said in a statement following the fire that the project “met all required building regulations”.
Experts say the foam panel helped spread the fire quickly
“The EU also prescribes that the product performance regarding reaction to fire is tested with a European test method.
“The EU does co-fund various types of building renovation projects, mostly through regional policy – of course it is for Member States to ensure buildings on their territory comply with national law.”