Practices

Analysis: Is Europe ready for the smart buildings revolution?

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An analysis by the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE) on the readiness of EU countries to transition to smart buildings concludes that no Member State is fully prepared to take advantage of the benefits that smart building technologies will entail. BPIE assesses aspects such as dynamic operability, energy-system responsiveness, renewable energy uptake as well as dynamic and self-learning control systems to judge how well prepared Europe is for an increasing share of smart buildings. 

 

Smart buildings are flexibly connected and interacting with the energy system, being able to produce, store and/or consume energy efficiently.

 

The leading countries in terms of a smart-readiness, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and the Netherlands, have implemented enabling policies. But most countries show little progress in opening the market to demand response or in encouraging the penetration of energy storage capacity in buildings. The report presents a series of progressive policies and innovative frontrunner projects which prove the economic viability of smart buildings.

 

The analysis finds that “smart infrastructure” is not yet in place. Only three countries, Sweden, Finland and Italy, have completed their deployment of smart meters, with nearly all consumers equipped with smart meters. Several countries have started their deployment, but progress is slow. EU legislation could play a more effective role to encourage the roll-out of ‘smart infrastructure’ by enabling an electricity market with flexible pricing, empowering consumers, and increasing renewable energy production, self-consumption and storage. The technological development will enable buildings to play a pro-active role in the energy system, providing also benefits for the occupants. But first and foremost, buildings have to be energy efficient as a prerequisite for a smart building stock.

 

The full report is available here.

 

It is also available in German (DE) here

Please note that the German version pays particular attention to the prerequisites for smart buildings in Germany and shows the levers which can be used to increase the smart skills of the German building sector.  Please see the relevant news BUILD UP news here.