Recommendation 1

2.70      That a Royal Commission be held into the Home Insulation Program to investigate the development and implementation of the Program, including:

  • gross and systematic failures in the development and implementation of the Program;
  • planning and design of the Program, particularly the extent of consideration given to it by relevant ministers and senior executives;
  • the safety and fire risks resulting from the installation of insulation under the Program;
  • the adequacy of ministerial and senior executive oversight and responsiveness to advice given or developments in implementation;
  • the loss of life and injuries to untrained workers contracted under the Program;
  • given the haste, scale, unprecedented and other circumstances of the implementation of this Program:
  • the adequacy of industry product standards and workplace training;
  • the complete failure of workplace training;
  • the extent to which pressures to deliver the Program as an immediate economic stimulus measure were expressed or implied, by whom and how they impacted appropriate program development and delivery; and
  • the warnings received within or by the government in the months leading up to and following the implementation of the Program.

Recommendation 2

4.43      The government must inspect every home which had insulation installed under the Home Insulation Program for fire and safety risks.

Recommendation 3

4.45      The government's safety checks under the Home Insulation Safety Program and the Foil Insulation Safety Program must ensure that any shortcomings in relation to product quality or installation standards are rectified.

Recommendation 4

4.46      The government should put in place a mechanism to check work undertaken through the Foil Insulation Safety Program and the Home Insulation Safety Program to ensure that all safety standards and requirements are adhered to.

Recommendation 5

4.63      The government must pursue, finalise and publicly account for every case of fraud under the Home Insulation Program.

Recommendation 6

5.23      The government should establish a dedicated and industry-independent program to research insulation systems and help develop efficient and effective insulation policy.

Recommendation 7

5.28      That Standards Australia consider amending its funding mechanism so as to disallow contributions from any stakeholders with a potential commercial interest in any Australian Standard.

Recommendation 8

5.30      That Standards Australia consider reconfiguring its technical committee arrangements to prevent commercial interests from being seen to unduly dominate decisions which should be based on scientific evidence.

Recommendation 9

5.32      Standards Australia consider responding publicly and in detail to the scientific criticisms of AS/NZS 4859.1, and if necessary undertake an independent review of the standard.

Recommendation 10

5.49      The Australian Building Codes Board should consider:

  • making public the submissions received during the consultation on the recent changes to the energy efficiency requirements of the Building Code of Australia;
  • responding publicly and in detail to the concerns raised in this inquiry, and any related issues raised in submissions to the recent consultation, about the treatment of insulation in the energy efficiency requirements of the Building Code of Australia; and
  • explaining the basis upon which BCA has not adopted suggestions that roof/ceiling R‑value standards in the BCA (volume 2, table should include, in warm climate zones, maximum up values for naturally ventilated houses as well as minimum down values.

Recommendation 11

6.26    That the Government form a small advisory group, representative of all of the different components of the insulation industry, to:

  • develop and consider policies or measures necessary to maintain a viable insulation industry in Australia;
  • consider policies or measures to maximise the energy efficiency for Australia's building stock in safe and measured ways;
  • proceed with the necessary research and changes to standards required to provide clarity around the efficiency of different forms of insulation for different climates; and
  • review industry standards and workplace practices to ensure high quality standards across all jurisdictions and rebuild public confidence in the sector.

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