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The Energy Efficiency Investment Potential for the Building Environment: Two approaches

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This report has been prepared on behalf of the European Commission (DG ENER).  The aim of this report is to explain how the Energy Efficiency Investment Potential for the building environment can be calculated. Two approaches have been used. Both approaches are based on the Frauenhofer study on energy saving potentials (Eichhammer et al., 2009, Study on the Energy Savings Potentials in EU Member States, Candidate Countries and EEA Countries). The first approach additionally uses the ECF study on energy saving policies (Wesselink et al., 2010, Energy Savings 2020 – How to triple the impact of energy saving policies in Europe. Report to the European Climate Foundation (ECF)). The second approach falls back on the October 2011 published report on the building environment in Europe from the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE 2011, Europe's Buildings under the Microscope). Another distinction is the definition of buildings, where in the second approach new buildings will also be taken into account.


Approach 1 is limiting the building environment to the following sub-sectors:

  • Dwellings (excluding electricity for lighting and appliances)
  • Tertiary buildings (including electricity for lighting, fans and AC)
  • Office buildings in industry.


In approach 2, the building environment is defined as:

  • Refurbishment of public buildings;
  • Refurbishment of the residential sector;
  • New buildings with an energy performance beyond standards.

Compared to approach 1, a clear distinction is made between the refurbishment of public versus residential buildings and new buildings will be taken into account.