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2022-06-28 | Tim Mandel, Lukas Kranzl, Samuel Thomas
Energy Efficiency First and multiple impacts: integrating two concepts for decision-making in the EU energy system
Enefirst

The objective of this report is twofold. First, based on an expert workshop and a literature review, it aims to integrate the state of knowledge on the concepts of EE1st and MI. This concerns the theoretical interlinkages between the two concepts as well as the possible role of different decision-support frameworks (e.g. cost-benefit analysis) and evaluation perspectives.

Second, the report provides evidence on the magnitude of selected MI from a model-based assessment for the EE1st principle in the EU-27. Three scenarios are compared for the MI of air pollution and indoor comfort. We find that factoring in MI certainly affects the trade-off between demand-side and supply-side resources, making it critical to include them in model-based assessments in the scope of EE1st

2022-06-24 | Jesse Glicker, Zsolt Toth and Jonathan Volt (BPIE), Maarten De Groote and Paulina Rodriguez Fiscal (VITO)
Positive Energy Neighbourhoods: Drivers of Transformational Change
BPIE

In light of EU climate goals and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, significant measures are needed to decarbonise the economy, reduce energy use and future-proof the building stock. With 75% of Europeans living in urban areas and a rising focus on existing buildings to achieve full decarbonisation by 2050, there is significant opportunity and need to focus on innovative solutions in neighbourhoods and homes, beyond the individual building level. Successful decarbonisation of the EU building stock calls for an integrated, participatory and neighbourhood-based approach.

Read the full paper here

2022-04-13
Cost Study of the Building Decarbonization Code
New Buildings Institute

This “Cost Study of the Building Decarbonization Code” analyzes the incremental first cost and life cycle cost of two common building types that follow the code language in NBI’s Building Decarbonization Code. The study, which was supported by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), analyzes first costs for both all-electric and mixed-fuel paths for single-family and medium office prototypes. It also includes life cycle cost analysis for the single-family scenario. Ultimately, the cost study found that all-electric homes achieve construction savings and mixed-fuel buildings households are only nominally more expensive. It also found marginal additional first costs for property owners of the all-electric medium office building prototype, with most of those attributed to electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Additionally, researchers determined that life cycle cost analysis (LCCA) for the single-family prototypes produced both economic and societal benefits. Researchers used cost data from New York State, a relatively expensive market, in colder Climate Zone 5A.

Download the report here

2022-06-24
Decarbonising the building sector in Europe
OID

The Green Deal, introduced by the European Commission in early 2020, aims to make the European economy carbon neutral by 2050. In order to achieve this neutrality, European countries are developing their climate roadmaps for each sector, including the building sector. In order to assist players in the sector, OID provides a study on current practices and strategies in the building sector of the following countries: France, England, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Denmark.

Read the study here.

2022-06-13
Level(s), A common language for building assessment
European Union

Level(s) is a European framework to help built-environment sector professionals assess and monitor the sustainability performance of buildings. If you operate an assessment or certification scheme in the European Union, the publication "Level(s), A common language for building assessment" can help you understand how Level(s) complements your work. 

If you are interested in Level(s) but unsure where to start, don’t worry. The Level(s) eLearning programme will help you to get going. The eLearning programme is also the perfect resource for users with some experience of Level(s) who want to improve their understanding in one or more aspects of the European common language for sustainable buildings.

If you are using Level(s), the European framework for assessing the sustainability performance of buildings, you can access the European Commission’s free Calculation and Assessment Tool (CAT) to help you create Level(s) assessments for building projects. CAT is there to support you to complete life cycle assessments using Level(s) during the different phases of building design, construction and maintenance or de-construction.

2022-06-07
Thinking Ahead for Buildings, Climate and People – BPIE Biennial report 2020 – 2021
BPIE

In the past two years, our ambition and commitment to advance change led to achieving major advances in analysing and promoting buildings and energy demand policies, in new research on building sector policies and business models.

Putin’s aggression in Ukraine, the COVID-19 pandemic, and soaring energy prices in Europe, have led to a fundamental rethinking in the area in which we focus our work. These developments, in combination with the ever-starker warnings of the climate science community allow only one conclusion: We need to accelerate positive change and be bold, in both our thinking and our actions.

What underpins our strategic decisions and daily work is the will and desire to ask the hard questions: How can Europe become the climate champion it committed itself to be? And how can the built environment support and encourage a truly sustainable – and affordable – lifestyle for all? 

With this biennial report, we are sharing our story and achievements of the years 2020-2021 and intend to provide a window into who we are as an organisation, how we are delivering positive impact and how we are moving towards bigger thinking and bolder action so we can achieve truly climate-neutral buildings.

2022-05-26
Building to net zero: costing carbon in construction
UK Parliament

From residential to commercial buildings, the UK’s built environment is responsible for 25% of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions. The Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) warns that to date there has been a lack of Government impetus or policy levers to assess and reduce these emissions. With climate deadlines looming, urgent action is needed.

Download the report now. 

2022-06-03
Putting a stop to energy waste: How building insulation can reduce fossil fuel imports and boost EU energy security
BPIE

This study shows how improving insulation can reduce energy demand and drastically cut Russian oil and gas imports for heating in buildings. Investing in building renovation can reduce the use of fossil fuels for heating in buildings, reaching 44% in gas savings, save 45% of final energy demand and substantially contribute to securing the EU’s energy needs.

2022-06-02 | August Williams-Eynon; Lindsay Brugger
Resilient Retrofits: Climate Upgrades for Existing Buildings
Urban Land Institute (ULI)

The report introduces real estate actors, designers, policymakers, and finance professionals to the opportunities and challenges of preparing existing buildings for accelerating physical climate risks, including extreme temperatures, floods, storms and high winds, seismic risks, water stress/drought, and wildfires. The report includes the following:

  • The business case for resilient retrofits
  • A summary of several design strategies for each physical climate risk
  • A selection of public-sector policies influencing the retrofit context
  • An array of financing solutions applicable to retrofits 
2022-06-02 | Monika Henn
Renewable Energy Strategies for Real Estate
Urban Land Institute (ULI)

The path to decarbonization in real estate requires the integration of a renewable energy strategy, including both installed onsite and purchased offsite clean power. There is a strong business case for renewable energy, including lowering energy costs or reducing cost volatility, strengthening the utility grid, improving resilience, meeting net zero goals, and increasing tenant demand. However, there are challenges to assessing opportunities, deal structures, and financing mechanisms that limit market uptake. The Renewable Energy Strategies for Real Estate Report aims to help real estate practitioners understand the business case for renewables and develop a strategy to identify, prioritize, and execute renewable energy deals both on site and off site.
Renewable energy is not a new concept or startup technology. All types of buildings with varying ownership models and lease structures have been able to generate or procure renewable energy. With increasing stakeholder demand for sustainable real estate and a growing attention on setting net zero goals, renewable energy will play a large role in buildings of the future.

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