PDF | 4 MB - Australian Building Codes Board


PDF | 4 MB - Australian Building Codes Board

The Building Code of Australia (BCA)

Digital TV

Antenna Systems for Homes


Digital TV Antenna Systems

Photo courtesy of John Gollings. Inset: ‘Your Home Technical Manual’

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Non-Mandatory Document Non-Mandatory Document

Non-Mandatory Document Non-Mandatory Document

Digital TV Antenna

Systems for Homes

Non-Mandatory Document Non-Mandatory Document Non-Mandatory Document

Australian Building Codes Board

GPO Box 9839 CANBERRA ACT 2601

Ph: 1300 134 631 • Fax: (02) 6213 7287


Printed on recycled paper


Annual Business Plan 2009–10

Building regulation continues to be one of COAG’s National Reform Agenda hotspots. The ABCB

Business Plan summarises efforts to deliver regulatory reform that contributes in particular to

maintaining housing affordability and employment, delivers on government priorities such as access

for people with a disability and bushfire mitigation, seeks to reduce variations, minimise regulatory


overlap and ensure a measured response to sustainability. Energy Efficiency has been identified as

a priority for COAG and has a strong focus in this year’s Business Plan, as does life safety.

The ABCB provides Australia with a national building regulation reform vehicle. It uses well

established impact assessment and consultation mechanisms to ensure that any regulatory reform

action is effective and proportional to the issue being addressed. Through its strong gatekeeper

role, the ABCB strives to reduce regulatory burden.

Further detail is now provided on ABCB activities that support COAG’s reform agenda and address

objectives of the Building Code of Australia (BCA).


The ABCB is a joint initiative of all levels of government in

Australia, together with the building industry. Its mission

is to oversee issues relating to health, safety, amenity and

sustainability in building.

The ABCB promotes effi ciency in the design, construction

and performance of buildings through the national

Building Code of Australia (BCA), and the development of

effective regulatory and non-regulatory approaches.

The Board aims to establish effective and proportional

codes, standards and regulatory systems that are

consistent between States and Territories.


The 2009-10 Business Plan places a strong emphasis on the ABCB’s core function – maintaining and updating the BCA by ensuring

good regulatory practice in response to calls for regulation. A relevant, contemporary building code, achieved through rigorous

assessment of emerging issues and ongoing review of existing provisions, is a critical contributor to an effi cient building and

construction industry, a safer built environment and a strong national economy.

Life safety remains a core business priority in the Business Plan. The ABCB will be adopting the new bushfi re standard AS 3959 2009

for residential buildings in the BCA for 1 May 2010.

Energy effi ciency is a priority for COAG. In support of the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) the COAG Working Group on

Climate Change and Water has developed a National Strategy for Energy Effi ciency (NSEE), including a package of measures for

residential and commercial buildings across Australia. To this end, the ABCB will be responding to the requirements of the strategy.


energy efficiency and Climate Change Adaptation

The NSEE will help households and businesses reduce their energy costs, improve the productivity of the economy and reduce the cost

of greenhouse gas abatement under the CPRS. The BCA will be the vehicle to help deliver these objectives by 2010, giving the ABCB

a challenging task. An illustration of the timelines associated with this important initiative may be found on the centre pages of this

Business Plan.

Collaboration with the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change to evaluate the robustness of the BCA provisions against the

predicted changes in natural hazards due to climate change is also being progressed.

Access for People with a disability

The ABCB has provided advice to the Commonwealth Government to develop Premises Standards to align the BCA with the Disability

Discrimination Act. Following Government consideration of the fi ndings of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Legal

and Constitutional Affairs inquiry, as reported in “Access All Areas”, the ABCB will respond to Government direction as needed.

DeLIVery oF tHe reForm AGeNDA to mINImISe tHe BUILDING reGULAtory BUrDeN

Reform of the building regulatory regime remains a priority for the ABCB. In these times of economic slow down, good regulatory

practice will help ensure that building regulations do not impact negatively on employment or housing affordability. The ABCB strives

to minimise the regulatory burden to keep compliance costs associated with building and construction down.

The Board will also continue to advise relevant policy owners of the benefi ts of the ‘Gate way’ model to limit local government

interventions into building regulations.

The ABCB remains ready to respond to Government direction on the development of a new National Construction Code (NCC) that

could consolidate all on-site regulatory requirements. COAG has agreed to extend the implementation of the NCC by 12 months to

enable a more comprehensive solution to be developed by the Commonwealth in consultation with stakeholders.

Variation reduction strategy

Under the IGA, signatory Ministers have committed their jurisdictions to restricting any new variations by, as far as practicable:

limiting variations to those arising from particular geographical, geological or climatic factors, as defi ned in the BCA; requiring that

any variations be subject to a regulatory impact assessment; and requiring that any variation be approved by the State or Territory

Minister. The IGA also commits States and Territories to take reasonable steps to consolidate all of their mandatory requirements

affecting the design, construction and performance of buildings into the BCA.

The Variation Reduction Strategy (VRS) is a project included in the Business Plan which aims to deliver this goal. Consolidation of

non-BCA variations (building controls contained in other legislation or policy) into the BCA will increase accessibility, transparency,

accountability and consistency. To this end, the ABCB’s National Technical Summit in April 2009 focused on a program to accelerate

variation reduction. There was progress in reducing variations to the national code, with some changes to occur in BCA 2010, whilst

variations to be resolved in further editions of the BCA were also identifi ed.


A primary role of the ABCB is to maintain and update the national BCA to ensure effective regulatory systems. Within this framework

the ABCB must carefully manage the complex demands of issues that impact on life safety, health, amenity, accessibility and


All potential changes to the BCA must be considered in accordance with COAG best practice regulatory principles and be subject to a

regulation impact assessment.

The initial presumption for the ABCB is not to introduce new or increased regulation and instead, investigate alternative means

of achieving the desired result. If intervention is necessary, the BCA sets minimum acceptable regulatory requirements that are

proportional to the issue being addressed.

2008-09 KeY AChieVeMenTs 2009-10 KeY PerforMAnCe indiCATors

• Delivered BCA 2009 in line with COAG Principles

• Ministerial endorsement of ABCB Business Plan by Aug 2009

• ABCB regulation reform Business Plan for 2008-09 endorsed by

Building Ministers’ Forum (BMF)

• COAG fully informed about impact of planning and local

government interventions into building regulations

• BCA robustness to meet adverse impacts of climate change


• Reduced State and Territory code variations in BCA 2009 and

conducted a National Technical Summit that focused solely on

variation reduction

• Responded to Government direction on climate change

abatement policy intent

• Agreed to the inclusion of new bushfi re standards for residential

buildings in BCA 2010

• BCA 2009 Information Seminars held in capital cities with over

1600 delegates in attendance

• Released Digital TV Antenna Systems Handbook and collaborated

with Dept of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy

to release Digital TV Antenna Systems for Homes Handbook

• Released Impact Assessment Toolkit

• Completed preliminary impact assessment of amenity issues

associated with passenger lifts in Class 2 residential buildings

• Delivered the ABCB 2009 National Conference to the satisfaction of

industry and other stakeholders by September 2009

• Completed regulatory impact statement for increasing the energy

effi ciency requirements for all classes of buildings by January 2010

• BCA 2010 Information Seminars held in capital cities by April 2010

• Delivered BCA 2010 by May 2010 in line with COAG Principles

• Reduced State and Territory Code variations in BCA 2010 by

May 2010

• Responded to relevant parts of the National Strategy for Energy

Effi ciency, as requested by COAG, by June 2010

• Responded to Government direction on disability access in

buildings by June 2010

• Responded to Government direction on climate change requests

by June 2010

• Completed regulatory impact statement for proposed BCA slips,

trips and falls provisions by June 2010

• Completed regulatory impact statement for proposed BCA

provisions for the mitigation of the effects of salinity in saline

prone areas by June 2010

• On bushfi res,adopted a new Standard in BCA 2010 and assisted

the Victorian Royal Commission on Bushfi res as required by

June 2010

• Completed regulatory impact statement for proposed BCA

provisions relating to cyclones and climate change by June 2010

ABCB WorK ProGrAm 2009-10


Nationally Consistent & Cost effective

Safer and more Socially Inclusive

A more Sustainable Built environment

regulatory Framework

Built environment

Informed and responsive Building Industry

Increased Practitioner Skills & Competencies

Business PlAn PrioriTY ProJeCT nAMe ProJeCT ouTPuT


Sustainability - National Strategy for Energy Effi ciency

Subject to a RIS, increase the stringency of energy effi ciency requirements (incl. hot water and lighting) for all classes of buildings for

BCA 2010.

Access for People with a Disability

Respond to Government policy direction on disability access to buildings as it applies to the BCA.

Sustainability - Adaptation

Develop a RIS for consideration by the Board in late 2009, which analyses proposals to improve the design and construction of buildings in

areas subject to cyclones as a result of climate change.

Sustainability - Materials and Indoor Environment Quality (IEQ)

Monitor programs relating to materials use and IEQ.

Protection from Threats and Natural Disasters

Assessment of BCA implications arising from protection of critical infrastructure.

Bushfi re Royal Commission

Preparation for and representation at Victorian Royal Commission on bushfi res and follow-up initial action on Board announcement

on Bushfi re Bunkers on 24 Sept 2009.

Local Government Intervention - Building / Planning Delineation

Draw policy owners' attention to the 'Gateway' model for reducing building and planning overlap.

Buildings in Flood Prone Areas

Research options and recommendations submitted for Board direction.


Variation Reduction Strategy

A reduction in State/Territory BCA variations in BCA 2010 and report to Ministers.


Impact Assessment of all Regulatory Change Proposals

Effective regulation impact assessment processes in consultation with the OBPR and in accordance with COAG regulatory principles.

Quantifi cation of Performance Requirements

Measurable BCA performance requirements and/or additional verifi cation methods.

Facilitation of National Consistency in Technical and Administrative Systems

Interaction with existing national forums and administrations to facilitate a nationally consistent approach to building regulations.

Non Regulatory Handbooks

Manage the development of non-mandatory handbooks on matters not suitable for regulation.

Product Certifi cation - Codemark

Management and facilitation of Australian/New Zealand third party product certifi cation scheme.


Maintain and Update the BCA

Improved and up to date BCA technical requirements.

Standards Coordination and Committees

Documents, including Australian Standards, which are suitable for regulatory use and referencing in the BCA.

Emergency Egress for All Occupants

Consider research and advise Board on the development of provisions for emergency egress for all occupants including people with disabilities.


A RIS for consideration by the Board on BCA provisions for mitigation of the effects of salinity in saline prone areas.

Strategic Research Activities

Research to inform decisions on future BCA and non-regulatory measures through the relevant research bodies, Australian Research

Council and the National Adaptation Research Plan (Settlements and Infrastructure).

Slips, Trips and Falls

A RIS for consideration by the Board in early 2010, which analyses proposals to improve the design and construction of buildings to reduce the risk

of slips, trips and falls by building occupants.

Smoke Alarms in Residential Buildings

Recommendations on types and locations of smoke alarms in residential buildings submitted for Board direction.

Fire Safety in Early Childhood Centres

Liaise with the Australasian Fire Authorities and Emergency Services Council (AFAC) requesting assistance in obtaining evidence to

determine the nature and scope of the problem.

External Noise in Residential Apartment Buildings

Liaise with the Planning Offi cials Group (POG) requesting as a matter of urgency that planning offi cials develop and agree on national

noise zone mapping/criteria.

Class 1b and 3 Building Classifi cation and Use

Administrations and industry to agree on building defi nition changes.

BCA Advisory Service

BCA advice to subscribers, practitioners and the general community.

BCA Awareness and Training

National information seminars and training materials to enhance awareness and understanding of the BCA among practitioners, the

tertiary sector and community.

BCA Marketing and Promotion

Raised awareness of the BCA and other ABCB activities.

National Conference

Delivery of an ABCB Conference supported by industry.

International Code Research and Collaboration

Access to international research and regulatory developments to inform the Board.


minimum necessary Performance-Based

reduced reliance on regulation including

Strengthen reforms to Building

transparency, Accountability and

Direction Setting to Align with Strategic

Greater National Consistency including

Codes to Achieve Health, Safety, Amenity

increased Practitioner Skills and

regulation (through International

international Consultation including increased

Priorities as established by ministers

Variation reduction Strategy

and Sustainability of Buildings

Non-mandatory Guidelines


Impact Assessment

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