EPBD updates

Sustainable buildings
1 December 2017


On 30 November 2016, the European Commission announced the revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) as part of the new set of legislation, called the Clean Energy Package for All Europeans. The revision procedure has been ongoing since then.


Cerame-Unie (CU) published a revised position paper on the revision of the EPBD on 13 September 2017. It has been shared to the relevant stakeholders, taking part in the negotiations, at European and national levels. Cerame-Unie supports a holistic approach and the use of primary energy demand as indicator, as it is the most appropriate for calculating energy performance of buildings. It is necessary to consider a twofold approach when calculating the energy performance of buildings:


  • For renovation, the level of thermal insulation of the building envelope in existing buildings is normally poor compared to new buildings. Hence, it is essential to put priority on the optimization of the insulation of the building envelope in case of renovation of old buildings.
  • For new buildings, the level of thermal insulation of the envelope of new buildings is already very high because of existing requirements in national building regulations. Thus, the calculation of the energy performance of new buildings shall take into account a combination of a very good standard insulation with modern heating/cooling technology and supply of the building with renewable energy. This leads to the most economically and ecologically optimal solution for new buildings.


The EU lawmakers reached a political agreement on the revised EPBD during the last trilogue negotiations on 20 December 2017. At the core of the agreement are the long-term renovation strategies, which will have to be put in place by all EU countries. Building renovation investments will have to be adopted at national level in order to achieve a highly energy efficient and decarbonised building stock by 2050. The political agreement also introduces a "smartness indicator" which will measure the buildings capacity to use new technologies and electronic systems to optimise its operation and interact with the grid.


Following this political agreement, the text of the Directive will have to be formally approved by the EP and the Council in early 2018, and then published in the Official Journal of the European Union.