Integrated building renovations must be a cornerstone of the European Green Deal

On the first day of Ursula von der Leyen’s European Commission, EuropeOn joined forces with 11 major European clean energy associations, calling for a bold strategy concerning the renovation of the EU building stock to be part of the European Green Deal – with on-site renewables, energy efficiency, and smart energy solutions at its core.

In light of the European Parliament having just declared a continent-wide climate emergency, the statement – signed by the Coalition for Energy Savings, Energy Cities, the European Alliance of Companies for Energy Efficiency in Buildings (EuroACE), the European Alliance to Save Energy (EU-ASE), the European Building Automation and Controls Association (eu.bac), the European Association for Electrical Contractors (EuropeOn), the European Climate Foundation (ECF), smartEn, SolarPower Europe, and E3G – highlights the need to develop ambitious actions for the renovation of Europe’s existing building stock, which accounts for 36% of the region’s CO2 emissions and approximately half of total European energy demand.

The signatories urge the Commission to:

  • Ensure that Green Deal policies include simplified and streamlined financing mechanisms accessible to all Europeans;
  • Deploy a strategy to ensure a skilled and knowledgeable workforce in all trades and specialised crafts of the building sector;
  • Promote renovation strategies adapted to the diversity and heterogeneity of the European built environment. The establishment of a multi-level implementation platform for building renovations – engaging decision-makers from the local, national, and European level, as well as representatives from the energy, construction, and financing sectors – will be key to ensuring the delivery of these strategies on the ground.

The statement further points out that the solutions required to address these issues already exist in Europe: including, high performance envelopes, energy efficient products and services, on-site renewables, energy storage facilities, and digitally enabled energy management systems. By calling on the Commission to commit to concrete actions to roll-out these solutions, signatories highlight that the buildings we live, work, and study in must be part of the solution to facilitating a European Green Deal and ensure a just transition for all Europeans.

Read the full letter here.