As of 2004, most states and territories implemented, either through the Building Code of Australia (BCA) or independently, regulations which established minimal thermal requirements for residential buildings. The aim was to reduce operational energy usage for new homes as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions for the residential sector. The BCA requirements are found in Part 3.12 (Volume Two) of the Code and are based on minimum R-values for different building elements. They vary for the different defined zones throughout Australia.
The links below include the most up-to-date calculated R-values for various timber framed building elements in addition to other resources regarding thermal and energy efficiency for timber:
R-Values for timber framed building elements - authoritative estimates of the R-value of common building construction elements incorporating timber-framed construction. These may be required to satisfy minimum energy efficiency standards introduced by building regulatory authorities throughout Australia.
Insulation solutions to enhance the thermal performance of suspended floor systems in Australia - a review of the range of thermal insulation materials and products that manufacturers recommend as suitable for installation with timber floors. The report aims to provide information and to initiate industry discussion in response to increasing mandatory thermal performance requirements for Class 1 Buildings throughout Australia.
Environmentally friendly housing using timber - principles - the design of a house has to take into account various base requirements such as aesthetics, functional and financial considerations.The principles of designing environmentally friendly housing using traditional timber construction help to provide informed decision making for designers, architects, builders, developers, home buyers and building authorities.
Environmental benefits of building with timber - construction design can contribute greatly to maximising comfort and to minimising non-renewable energy consumption. Timber frame buildings are now being designed to meet low energy construction standards as timber has a high standard of thermal comfort while consuming minimal non-renewable energy.
Australian Building Codes Board website - the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) is a joint initiative of all levels of Australian Government and includes representatives from the building industry.