|New requirements on public buildings: EuroACE calls Member States to seize this opportunity to kickstart the market for deep retrofits and calls for stronger governance in the Energy Union
On 9 July, two thresholds that push action in public buildings, one in the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) and one in the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), will be lowered from 500m² to 250m². As the implementation of both the EED and the EPBD by Member States has proven challenging, this step towards more stringent provisions risks remaining unheeded, despite the benefits attached to these updated requirements. This underlines the need for a stronger governance architecture for the Energy Union, if it is to deliver its full potential and promises.
As foreseen from the start by the EED and the EPBD, the thresholds for some requirements related to energy efficiency in public buildings will automatically, starting today, be lowered from 500m² to 250m². More precisely, these requirements relate to the exemplary role of public buildings (EED Article 5), and the issue of Energy Performance Certificates for public buildings (EPBD Article 12). Starting today, each Member State will have to ensure that 3% of central government buildings which have a total useful floor area above 250m² (and not only above 500m²) is renovated each year, in order to meet the minimum energy performance requirements. From today, Member States shall also ensure that an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is issued for public buildings frequently visited by the public and with a total useful floor area above 250m² (and not only above 500m²).
“EuroACE welcomes the widening of these requirements, as it increases the number of public buildings required to be renovated every year, and to be provided with an EPC”, stated Susanne Dyrboel, President of EuroACE. Lowering these thresholds is therefore a step in the right direction, as it will help delivering the multiple benefits of improving the energy efficiency of buildings, i.e. more local jobs, more growth, reduced energy bills, more comfort, better health, improved public finances and less CO2 emissions. As a matter of fact, according to the latest report from the International Energy Agency, energy efficiency is the largest contributor (49%) to worldwide reduction of greenhouse gas emissions until 2030.
Consequently, these updated EED and EPBD requirements, if quickly and fully implemented, represent a wonderful opportunity for the public sector to deliver on their promises to the European citizens, who aspire to live and work in more efficient and comfortable buildings. Increasing the share of public buildings being renovated will enable the Member States to lead by example and to kickstart the market for deep retrofits. Moreover, having more public buildings with an EPC will empower the citizens with more information and will trigger more engagement from the wider public.
“EuroACE is however worried that these changes might get unnoticed by Member States, and we express our concern about the delays in the implementation of the EED and EPBD”, complemented Adrian Joyce, Secretary General of EuroACE. In its last report, the Coalition for Energy Savings showed that the implementation of EED Article 5 has proved to be challenging for Member States. Therefore, EuroACE calls on the Member States for action on renovating their own buildings, and providing them with an EPC. This would be the right answer to the citizens, who are not willing anymore to let their government use taxpayers’ money to heat and cool inefficient public buildings.
EuroACE believes that a stronger governance architecture within the Energy Union will be part of the solution, and will continue to call on Member States to fully and ambitiously implement the EED and the EPBD. In this new governance framework, and as they have always been, EuroACE companies are fully supportive of a proper implementation of energy efficiency measures at national and local level, ultimately benefitting the European citizens.
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|EuroACE “Quizzing the Stakeholders” at EUSEW, on renovating buildings to meet Energy Union goals
Watch our video on Euractiv!
On 17 June, EuroACE organised, together with the VELUX Group, its 4th edition of the “Quizzing the Stakeholders” event, in the framework of the EU Sustainable Energy Week. This year, the session focused on how building renovation could help to fulfill the EU Energy Union goals, by delivering multiple benefits to the citizens, the companies and the national governments.
Moderated by Euractiv journalist James Crisp, the EuroACE / VELUX “Quizzing the Stakeholders” event was a success, with more than 120 participants. The original format of this conference, where every attendant can actively take part through quizzing questions, was highly appreciated, although it has put the stakeholders’ knowledge into question. In fact, a majority of respondents got the facts right only on half of the questions, and they were just a bit more than 50% to have the right answer on only two questions!
This conference was an opportunity to show how building renovation could help the EU to achieve its Energy Union targets, by delivering multiple benefits to the citizens, the companies and the governments. As a matter of fact, more energy efficient buildings could help decrease the EU energy dependence, create local jobs, improve health & comfort, decrease energy bills, and increase energy savings. The session also touched upon the opportunities for the financial sector to invest in energy efficiency in buildings.
|Multiple Benefits of Renovating Buildings Demonstrated at Interactive Event
Brussels, 17th June 2015
Multiple Benefits of Renovating Buildings Demonstrated at Interactive Event
As part of the EU Sustainable Energy Week High-Level Policy Conference, EuroACE organises on Wednesday 17th June 2015 an interactive event in cooperation with its member company The VELUX Group, entitled “Quizzing the Stakeholders: Renovating Buildings to Meet Energy Union Goals Maximising the Multiple Benefits for EU Citizens”. Emphasis is placed at this year’s event, now a firm fixture in EUSEW, on the potential of deep energy renovation of the building stock to ensure that the achievement of long term EU goals is of maximum benefit to the EU economy and society.
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|3% Renovation of Public Buildings: Member States fail to kickstart the market
A Report published today by the Coalition for Energy Savings “Implementing the EU Energy Efficiency Directive: Analysis of Member States plans to implement Article 5” reveals loopholes in implementation and a lack of political will to boost the renovation of central government buildings across the EU.
Out of the 28 EU Member States, 11 chose to implement Article 5 by adopting the default approach by renovating 3% of the total floor area for the buildings listed in their published inventory, and 17 by adopting the alternative approach (see Press Release Annex for map).
“The main objective of Article 5 is for the public sector, which has full control over its buildings, to lead by example and act as an important trigger to stimulate market transformation” explained Adrian Joyce, Secretary General of EuroACE. “National governments should be setting the example for regional and local governments, and opening up the market for the residential and commercial building stock. Instead, Member States have reported confused or limited information, and no clear plan on renovations to be undertaken to achieve the required energy savings.”
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