On 19 December 2017, representatives from the Estonian Presidency and the European Parliament reached a provisional agreement on the revised Directive on the energy performance of buildings (EPBD). This provisional political agreement was confirmed on 31 January by the EU ambassadors and on 23 February by the Parliament’s Industry and Energy Committee (ITRE). The text will now have to be formally adopted by the Parliament in plenary sitting on 17 April and then by the Council. After formal approval, the Directive will be published in the Official Journal of the EU, and it will enter into force twenty days later. The transposition period for this legislation is 20 months.
The main objective of the revised Directive is the decarbonisation of the existing building stock by 2050. It promotes cost-effective renovation works, introduces a smartness indicator for buildings, simplifies the inspections of heating and air conditioning systems and also promotes electro-mobility by creating parking spaces for electric vehicles.
ACE welcomes some positive elements and improvements, in particular: the high level of ambition for the renovation of the building stock (renovation into a highly energy efficient and decarbonised building stock by 2050); new references to indoor environment quality, well-being and comfort; new references to passive solutions; steps towards a limited disclosure of data for statistical and research purpose; and new references to measured and actual performance. But ACE regrets that the legislators have overlooked the risks and costs inherent in smart technologies and buildings. It also strongly opposes the exemption of systems from inspections when automated and strongly regrets that the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) system has not been improved and that EPCs now may be used to underpin financial measures.
Throughout the legislative procedure, ACE's position has been guided by five principles: