Under the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), all EU countries have established independent energy performance certification systems supported by independent mechanisms of control and verification. However, current practices and tools of energy performance assessment and certification applied across Europe face a number of challenges. Assessment processes and certificates have to become more reliable, user-friendly, cost-effective, have comparable good quality and be compliant with EU legislation in order to instil trust in the market and incite investments in energy efficient buildings.
They have to increasingly reflect the smart dimension of buildings and at the same time, facilitate convergence of quality and reliability of Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) across the EU. The building energy performance methodologies should also ensure a technology neutral approach, be transparently presented making use of International and European standards, in particular the set of ISO and CEN EPB standards6 developed under Commission mandate M/480 aimed at enabling the presentation of national and regional choices on a comparable basis. These next-generation energy performance assessment schemes will value buildings in a holistic and cost-effective manner across several complimentary performances: envelope performances, system performances and smart readiness (i.e. the ability of buildings to be smartly monitored and controlled and, to get involved in demand-side management strategies).
The assessment should be based on an agreed list of parameters/indicators, such as e.g. calculated annual final energy use, share of renewable energy used, past (climate corrected) final energy consumptions and energy expenditure, comfort levels or the level of smartness. The assessment methods should increasingly take into account output measures of performance (actual measured data) making use of available and increasing number of building energy related data from sensors, smart meters, connected devices etc.. These new schemes should contribute to improving the effectiveness of certificates, by demonstrating how these could be strengthened, modernised and best linked to integrated national/regional certification schemes within a framework that aids compliance checking and effectiveness of financial support.