Active House gives input to decision makers on the EPBD revision
The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), adopted in 2010, is the main legislative instrument at EU level when it comes to reducing the energy consumption of buildings. When the European Commission adopted its new Energy Union Strategy earlier this year, it promised to review all the European energy efficiency legislation in 2016, which indeed includes the EPBD. In view of this upcoming revision, the European Commission launched an online public consultation from June till October 2015 to gather stakeholders’ input on the subject.
Active House Alliance responded to the EPBD online consultation, and called for a more holistic legislative approach to buildings’ energy performance that includes health, safety and comfort issues, and makes these aspects just as important as energy efficiency and environmental impact. It also suggests that over time, the EPBD becomes a “sustainability” directive giving more attention also to other elements than energy efficiency.
Yet only a minority of projects are currently evaluated against sustainable benchmarks combining several aspects, like Active House, mainly due to expectations of higher complexity and costs. In this respect, Active House Alliance called on the Commission to urge Member States to develop national initiatives and information campaigns with a view to increasing the visibility of the benefits of resilient buildings with long term lifetime that are healthy, energy efficiency with low carbon footprint.
Also, given the increasing number of national and private schemes on sustainable performance of buildings being developed, Active House Alliance called for a harmonization of these schemes preferably in a separate EU Directive based on already existing standards for sustainable construction.
As a next step, the European Commission will evaluate the inputs received from stakeholders through the public consultation as part of the EPBD review process, and will assess how these contributions feed into the different policy options contemplated in the upcoming review of the EPBD.