Open Letter: It is time to enable the transition towards the building stock of tomorrow

Dec. 15, 2017 | EHPA acting in coalition to address EU Ministers of the Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, European Commissioner in charge of Climate Action and Energy, European Parliament’s rapporteur in charge of the EPBD.

View the full letter here

To: EU Ministers of the Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council; European Commissioner in charge of Climate Action and Energy;  European Parliament’s rapporteur in charge of the EPBD

Open Letter: It is time to enable the transition towards the building stock of tomorrow

Our associations represent millions of jobs in Europe and a wide range of business players which provide, implement and/or use energy technologies and services in buildings. Ahead of the third informal trilogue on the EPBD recast, we would like to remind of the importance for the EU to take the necessary measures that will both improve buildings’ performance and enable the energy transition.

We are convinced that an ambitious revision of the EPBD will not only reduce buildings’ energy consumption, which are currently responsible for 40% of EU’s final energy demand, but will also enable a more end-user focused, more decarbonised, and more digital energy system.

We therefore call on EU Members States and the European Commission to support the ambitious revision of the EPBD put forward by the European Parliament, with the vote of Bendt Bendtsen’s report in the ITRE Committee on 11th October. We call on the Council and the Commission to support the following issues:

  1. Ambitious long-term renovation strategies with clear milestones to boost the renovation of the existing building stock, considering the different building types (residential, non-residential and public buildings) by promoting tailor-made and technology-neutral incentive schemes (e.g. financing, deployment of smart technologies, national milestones for renovation strategies).
  2. Mandatory deployment of Building Automation and Control (BAC) systems in large non-residential buildings, in order to ensure proper maintenance, bring major energy savings, reduce CO2 emissions, improve health of occupants and create thousands of jobs.
  3. Promote the new smartness indicator of buildings to support consumer empowerment, ICT integration, and buildings’ ability to interact with the energy system and deliver flexibility.
  4. Go beyond energy savings provisions and adopt a holistic view of buildings’ involvement in the energy system, by enabling a proper framework for the deployment of infrastructures (i.e. on-site renewable generation, smart metering, demand-side flexibility and electro-mobility, storage) that will facilitate the buildings’ integration into a wider energy ‘eco-system’ (e.g. smart grid & micro-grid, sector connection between electricity and thermal energy).

These four critical issues must be properly addressed if we want to the make the EPBD recast a success for Europe’s climate and energy goals, as well as an opportunity for growth and jobs. We strongly believe that an ambitious EPBD recast will be beneficial to EU Member States and should therefore be supported. The resulting business potential for European companies, both SMEs and large companies, will benefit European citizens and society. For instance, an ambitious framework on BACs deployment would create between 200.000 and 300.000 direct jobs, and 3.7 million indirect jobs by 2030.

Let’s not miss the opportunity offered by the EPBD to bring sustainability and smartness into European buildings. Waiting another ten years is a luxury that our planet cannot afford!