Energy renovation and nZEB target in EU countries, the state of the art summarized in a European report

Written by Eurac Research

The “Comprehensive study of building energy renovation activities and the uptake of nearly zero-energy buildings in the EU” defines a comprehensive analysis of the renovation activities and nearly zero-energy buildings (nZEB) uptake in the EU from 2012 to 2016, applying indicators in line with the Building Stock Observatory (BSO).

The investigation was conducted in through three different surveys to building professionals on qualitative and quantitative indicators on renovation activities and measures to nZEB target achievement. A first result was the identification of the energy measures considered in the  non-energy and energy renovation processes.

A wide and complete overview in residential and non-residential buildings, with and without energy renovation measures in each EU28 countries was conducted collecting the data on renovation rate, investments costs, achieved energy savings, primary energy savings achieved, and number of NZEB constructed.

The most used financing scheme changed in relation to the residential and non-residential buildings. The most popular financing option  is  a  combination of  own  capital  and  a  loan  at  market  condition.  The second most prevalent combination is  own  capital  with  a  loan  from  friends  or  family. In comparison to consumers (i.e. residential buildings), non-residential renovation work is less frequently financed by own capital, as indicated by architects for their clients. Loans and grants are more often used than among consumers. One-third of non-residential renovation work is (partly) financed by a loan at market condition, and one-fourth by a loan with a below-market interest rate or a grant.

The study also investigates on drivers and their personal motivations on energy renovation initiatives, analysing personal benefits, health, environmental and financial aspects of consumers, clients of architects, clients of main contractors, architects, main contractors and installers. These last three drivers are the are the most motivated to recommend energy renovation because it benefits the environment, the client and their profits and personal benefits.

The information provided by this study aims to support policy makers and relevant stakeholders to understand the state of the art and plan the decarbonized building stock strategy by 2050.