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2023-01-18 | Mariangiola Fabbri, Judit Kockat, Ivan Jankovic, and Hélène Sibileau

This study shows that improving the insulation of all existing residential buildings in the EU would significantly contribute to securing the bloc’s energy independence, and achieving climate neutrality by 2050. Full renovation of EU residential buildings would result in a 44% reduction of energy demand for heating in buildings, or 777 TWh savings.

Read the full report here.

2022-06-30 | Wein, Julia; Bienert, Sven; Kuhlwein, Hunter
European Public Real Estate Association

This document provides guidelines on the use of the Carbon Risk Real Estate Monitor (CRREM) pathways and on the tool for the European Real Estate Association (EPRA) members, promoting and representing the European public real estate sector with more than 280 members, covering the entire spectrum of the listed real estate industry. An overview of the CRREM initiative is presented, including key benefits regarding assessment and climate risk analysis, the implementation of mitigation strategies for tackling transition risks, and setting decarbonization targets aligned with the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).

Download it here

2022-12-14 | Vincent Decroocq (IDE-E), Khaled Ben Abdesslem (IDE-E), Caroline Huwiler (IDE-E), Zineb Raji (IDE-E)

This report, prepared as part of activity A315 of the meetMED II project "Improving energy efficiency and thermal comfort in public buildings managed by local authorities", reviews these tools, highlights the role played by national public agencies in their deployment and defines the conditions necessary for their replication. This review is based on bilateral interviews with the national energy agencies of the partner countries, supplemented by a literature review.

Download the report in English and French

Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF)

The report provides guidance on how to contribute to the net-zero journey and decarbonize building portfolios using a stepwise approach. This guidance has been developed within the scope of the PCAF project Financing towards net-zero buildings, funded by the Laudes Foundation. Throughout its development, PCAF intensively engaged with the Core Project Team of the PCAF project, which consists of a diversified set of representatives from the financial industry; and the Expert Advisory Group, which is comprised of key stakeholders from the building and financial sectors at both European and global levels that provided key expertise and guidance.

Download the report here


The current Commission proposal does not go far enough in addressing operational and embodied carbon emissions on building lifecycle global warming potential (lifecycle-GWP), often referred to as Whole Life Carbon (WLC). Deploying WLC measures in the EU Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) recast will be a win-win for energy performance and climate action at the building and industry level. Therefore, a stepwise approach and a clear timeline that go beyond 2030 needs to be set out in the EPBD recast.

Read the policy brief here. 

2022-09-12 | Judit Kockat, Sheikh Zuhaib

The EU Buildings Climate Tracker finds that the European Union is facing a growing gap in advancing towards climate neutrality in the sector. This paper is complementary as it gives more details about the methodology and outlines results for all sub-indicators of the Tracker.

A first policy briefing highlighting its overall results as well as concrete policy recommendations for the EPBD revision was published in June 2022. This complimentary paper gives more details about the methodology and outlines results for all sub-indicators of the EU Buildings Climate Tracker: 

  1. CO₂ emissions from energy use in buildings by households and services 
  2. Final energy consumption in households and the service 
  3. Improvement in EPC ratings 
  4. Renewable energy share 
  5. Cumulated investment in renovation in real terms
  6. Annual domestic expenditure per household in real terms 
2022-08-30 | Sheikh Zuhaib

This X-tendo briefing provides recommendations on how to take EPC schemes to the nect level and is targeted at policymakers at EU and Member State level, public authorities and institutions responsible for their design, implementation and management.


The Net Zero Whole Life Carbon Roadmap, published in 2021, demonstrates that the UK built environment can be net zero carbon by 2050. The modelling found that for this to happen, both embodied and operational carbon must be reduced to almost zero, and that the use of circular economy principles are an important part of the solution. Five such principles and how to apply them were set out by UKGBC in Circular economy guidance for construction clients, published in 2019.

This UKGBC report seeks to increase understanding within the real estate sector of how circular economy principles can support whole life carbon reductions, and where there may be potential trade-offs; and provide greater clarity on how circular economy may be valued in relation to the whole life carbon impacts of buildings by translating these outcomes into financial and other value metrics.


The prevailing narrative influencing policymaking at EU level on energy and climate is that this transition will naturally lead to negative social impacts, which need to be managed and mitigated. However, this can and should be questioned. Is it true that the energy transition and, more specifically, building decarbonisation policies have, by default, negative social impacts? Is it true that the only strategy or solution is to mitigate them?

Alternative narratives, which highlight that there are both negative and positive implications from building decarbonisation measures, should be considered. It should be the goal of good policy design to ensure that positive impacts prevail, and ultimately it is the responsibility of policymakers to achieve this objective. Energy and climate policies, notably in the buildings sector, should aim at maximising positive social impacts and preventing negative ones, then minimising any negative impacts that are unavoidable. This discussion is crucial now, as the EU is reassessing and redesigning the architecture of its energy and climate policy framework, in a context of high energy prices and volatile markets – a context which needs special attention to respond to social impacts.

Download the policy briefing below.


The European Union has set a target to almost totally decarbonise the building sector by 2050, which raises the question of buildings’ energy performance. What is the best way of undertaking the immense energy renovation project needed to reach these objectives? One solution is to employ reliable measurement and guidance tools, such as Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs), which are part of a common toolkit used by European countries.
The stakes are particularly high given that the EU Taxonomy, whose aim is to establish a common reference system to qualify – including for buildings – sustainable property and real estate projects, is partly based on a rating system centred on EPCs.
This study is part of a three-volume publication on European EPCs. The ESREI intends to publish two detailed comparisons of European EPCs in the sample of countries selected, respectively concerning residential buildings and office buildings.