Buildings are responsible for approximately 40% of the EU’s energy consumption and for 36% of CO2 emissions in the EU. Currently, about 35% of the EU's buildings are over 50 years old and almost 75% of the building stock is energy-inefficient, while only 0.4-1.2% of the building stock is renovated each year. Therefore, the renovation of existing buildings has the potential to lead to significant energy savings. Investments in energy efficiency can stimulate the construction industry. SMEs would particularly benefit from a boosted renovation market.
The European Commission presented its strategy (“Renovation Wave for Europe”) to boost building renovation in October 2020. The Commission aims to at least double renovation rates by 2030 and make sure renovations lead to higher energy and resource efficiency. By 2030, 35 million buildings could be renovated and up to 160,000 additional jobs created in the construction sector.
The recast Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) builds on the “Renovation Wave”. The proposal for a recast EPBD was published by the European Commission in December 2021.
The EPBD is the EU's main legislative instrument promoting the improvement of the energy performance of buildings in the EU. It is currently being revised with the aim to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions and final energy consumption in the building sector by 2030, and to set a long-term vision for an EU building sector that is climate-neutral by 2050. In this respect, the recast EPBD aims to increase the rate and depth of renovations of energy-efficient buildings, improve information on energy performance and sustainability of buildings; guarantee that all new buildings meet ambitious minimum energy performance standards; and ensure that all new buildings are in line with the 2050 climate neutrality requirements.
On 18 May 2022, the European Commission proposed to re-amend the recast EPBD proposal by introducing a so-called “solar mandate” for certain building types and for all residential buildings by 2029 as part of its “REPowerEU plan”, a legislative package aiming at making the EU more independent vis-à-vis Russian fossil fuels.
Our position on the recast EPBD can be consulted HERE.
All FIEC Position Papers are available HERE.