On the 7th of December 2023, the EU Council, Parliament and Commission reached a provisional political agreement on the proposal to revise the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. This provisional agreement needs to be endorsed by the EU Council and Parliament in the coming months. The Industry, Research and Energy Committee of the EP will vote on the text on 23rd of January 2024.
Rapporteur for the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive Ciarán Cuffe (Greens/EFA, IE) said: “We have achieved something remarkable this evening. We created a blueprint for the transition towards a zero-emission building stock. With this plan, we add an essential pillar to the EU’s decarbonisation plans and begin the long journey towards reducing 36% of Europe’s CO₂ emissions".
“That journey will begin with the buildings that are wasting the most energy. Energy wasted is money wasted on bills. We must help citizens to save money, and protect them from volatile energy prices. That is why we have chosen a route that can lower energy bills for everyone, homeowners and renters alike, and addresses the root causes of energy poverty”, he added
The proposed revision of the EPBD aims to substantially reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy consumption in the EU building sector by 2030, and make it climate neutral by 2050. It also aims to have more worst-performing buildings renovated and improve information-sharing on energy performance.
An agreement on solar energy in buildings will ensure the deployment of suitable solar energy installations in new buildings, public buildings and existing non-residential ones which undergo a renovation action that requires a permit.
Regarding minimum energy performance standards (MEPS): in non-residential buildings, it is agreed that in 2030 all non-residential buildings will be above the 16% worst performing and by 2033 above 26%. Member states will be able to take into account the life-cycle global warming potential of the building, which includes the production and disposal of the construction products.
Concerning the renovation target for residential buildings: member states will ensure that the residential building stock will reduce the average energy consumption by 16% in 2030 and a range between 20-22% in 2035. 55% of the energy reduction will have to be achieved through renovation of the worst performing buildings.
Member states will adopt measures to decarbonize heating systems and phase out fossil fuels in heating and cooling with a view to completely phasing out fossil fuel boilers by 2040. Member states will also have to stop subsidizing stand-alone fossil fuel boilers as of 2025. Financial incentives will still be possible for hybrid heating systems, such as those combining a boiler with a solar thermal installation or a heat pump.
The focus of this issue is on the need for a common EU language when implementing this new EPBD. A common language supported by standards for HVAC professional (as included in the set of CEN and ISO EPB standards), but more important a common language between the financial sector and HVAC professionals. The renovation targets mentioned in the EPBD 2024 will require billions of Euro’s, the financial sector can provide this, if we are able to standardise our project descriptions. How, was presented at the last Brussels REHVA summit. Several articles in this RJ disclose this in clear language.