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Clean Energy Package: buildings essential for energy transition

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Shutterstock \ Deviatov Aleksei

Today the European Commission unveiled the long-awaited “Clean Energy for All Europeans” Package, an extensive set of legislative proposals revising key directives for the housing sector on energy efficiency and renewables.If the European Union is to continue as the frontrunner in climate change talks, this package will be fundamental.

 

On a 2-degree climate pathway, energy efficiency will reduce nearly 40% of global emissions by 2050, which is the largest share of any energy source so far, according to the International Energy Agency analysis. In 2015 alone the European energy renovation market created 882,900 jobs and generated a turnover of 109 billion euros.*

 

A sound set of measures in this Package would kill three birds with one stone, as investing in energy efficiency brings about economic, environmental and social benefits. The European Builders Confederation (EBC) – representing small and medium construction companies in Europe – therefore welcomes the Package as an important step towards an energy efficient Europe.

 

Revised Energy Efficiency Directive: targets have to be backed by effective measures

The President of the European Builders Confederation EBC, Patrick Liébus, said: “There is a huge debate around the targets of the Clean Energy Package, which level they should be fixed at and if they have to be binding. But the fundamental point of the discussion is, by and large, giving households and construction companies the proper means to achieve these targets. If people can’t cover the cost of renovation works or are not aware of the incentives, and if there are no competent companies to carry out the works, these targets will never be reached.”

 

 

Revised Energy Efficiency Directive: Priority on energy poverty will not help the EU gain the massive energy savings needed

EBC President Patrick Liébus said: “We think the proposal of prioritising and ring-fencing incentives for energy poverty or social housing in article 7 of the Energy Efficiency Directive goes in the wrong direction. On one hand, fuel poverty and social housing policies are – and have to be – financed by specific budget lines. On the other hand, this artificial segmentation of the renovation market will jeopardise investments and the possibility for millions of households to benefit from energy efficiency measures. Incentives and public policies should be open to all citizens living in old and leaky buildings.”

 

Background and links

* OpenExp study on Transformation of the EU Building Stock - You can find this and more data in this infographic EBC and Renovate Europe jointly produced

 

Established in 1990, the European Builders Confederation (EBC) is a European professional organisation representing national associations of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises working in the construction sector. EBC sits on the European Social Dialogue Committee of Construction. EBC is a member of UEAPME (the European association of micro-enterprises and SMEs), on behalf of which it chairs the UEAPME Construction Forum. The construction sector is of vital importance to the European economy. With 3 million enterprises and a total direct workforce of 18 million, the construction sector contributes at around 9% to the GDP of the European Union.

99.9% of the European construction sector is composed of small and medium-sized companies, which produce 80% of the construction industry's output. Small enterprises (less than 50 employees) are responsible for 60% of the production and employ 70% of the sector's working population

 

The PDF version with EBC contact detail is available here