Members of European Parliament Adopt Plans to Decarbonize Buildings - Smart Energy Decisions

Energy Efficiency, GHG Emissions, Industrial  -  March 12, 2024

Members of European Parliament Adopt Plans to Decarbonize Buildings

Members of the European Parliament adopted plans that were already agreed upon with the European Council to help lower energy consumption and GHG emissions from the buildings sector.

The proposed revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive aims to progressively reduce GHG emissions and energy consumption in the EU building sector and make it climate neutral by 2050. It also aims to have more worst-performing buildings renovated and improve information-sharing on energy performance.

According to the plans, all new buildings should be zero-emission as of 2030, while new buildings occupied or owned by public authorities should be zero-emission as of 2028.

For residential buildings, member states will have to put in place measures to ensure a reduction in the average primary energy used of at least 16% by 2030 and at least 20% to 22% by 2035.

According to the new directive, member states will have to renovate the 16% worst-performing non-residential buildings by 2030 and by 2033 the worst-performing 26% through minimum energy performance requirements.

If technically and economically suitable, member states would have to deploy solar installations progressively in public and non-residential buildings, depending on their size, and in all new residential buildings by 2030.

Member states have to outline how they will adopt measures to decarbonize heating systems with a view to phasing out fossil fuels in heating and cooling by 2040. Financial incentives will still be possible for hybrid heating systems that use a considerable share of renewable energy, such as those combining a boiler with a solar thermal installation or a heat pump.

“The directive shows clearly how climate policy can have real and immediate benefits for the less well-off in our society,” Rapporteur for the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive Ciarán Cuffe (Greens/EFA, IE) said in a statement. “This law will help bring down energy bills and addresses the root causes of energy poverty, while delivering thousands of high-quality, local jobs across the EU. Tackling 36% of Europe’s CO2 emissions, it adds an absolutely essential pillar to the European Green Deal. Today’s result shows that Parliament continues to support a Green Deal that delivers fairness and ambition, in equal measure”.

The directive was adopted with 370 votes to 199 with 46 abstentions. It will now have to be formally endorsed by the Council of Ministers in order to become law.



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