Energy Performance of Buildings Directive

Energy Performance of Buildings Directive 2024/1275: What’s to Know?

The revised Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EU/2024/1275) represents a significant step forward in the EU’s commitment to enhancing energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from buildings, which are among the largest energy consumers in Europe. This directive is pivotal, not only for achieving a substantial reduction in energy usage but also for supporting the EU’s climate goals of decarbonisation.

Under this directive, member states are encouraged to increase the renovation rates of existing buildings, especially those with subpar energy performance, through adaptable measures suited to their unique contexts. This flexibility is crucial in addressing the diverse characteristics of European buildings, from climate variations to historical architecture. The directive also emphasizes the importance of energy audits and energy management systems to ensure buildings not only comply with new standards but also contribute to energy savings over the long term.

This directive is published only a few months after the European Energy Efficiency Directive 2023/1791, as part of a determined effort to set the rules and obligations to reduce energy consumption across Europe.

Why the EU/2024/1275 Directive Matters Now

This directive is crucial because it directly addresses the immediate need for energy efficiency and decarbonisation in one of the largest energy-consuming sectors: buildings. The EPBD was published in 2010 and was already reviewed in 2018 and 2021, every time setting higher objectives and seeking further commitment by all countries. By enhancing energy audits and improving energy management systems, the directive wants to ensure that buildings not only meet stricter energy regulations but also contribute significantly to energy savings.

Furthermore, the directive aligns with the broader objectives of the EU’s Green Deal, aiming to cut emissions from the building sector by 60% by 2030 relative to 2015 levels. It positions the EU as a leader in sustainable practices and energy regulation, setting a global benchmark for energy performance in buildings. This proactive approach not only helps mitigate environmental impact but also fosters economic resilience by promoting energy-efficient technologies and green jobs. Thus, the directive is a pivotal step in ensuring a sustainable and economically viable future for the EU.

Data-driven ESG Strategy - Facilities Management - Guide - Spacewell Energy

Key Goals of the New Energy Directive

The new energy standards set forth by the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EU/2024/1275) are designed to drastically improve energy efficiency and push forward the decarbonisation of the building sector. There is a focus on reducing the energy consumption of buildings, both residential and non-residential, with different targets.

A key goal of these standards is to ensure that all new buildings are net-zero carbon emitters by 2030, which marks a significant step towards the EU’s broader climate targets. 

Two of the main elements to reach that goal include the implementation of energy audits and the integration of advanced energy management systems to monitor and control energy use effectively. These have gained importance over the years and they are becoming a standard for business accountability. Energy Management Systems like the Spacewell Energy Platform can help you address the requirements of this Directive so you can comply with new and upcoming reporting requirements.

Furthermore, the new Directive wants to achieve a substantial increase in the renovation rates of existing buildings, particularly those that currently have poor energy performance. By focusing on both new and existing infrastructure, the directive ensures a comprehensive approach to energy savings and sustainability across the EU.

In aligning with these ambitious goals, the directive also supports the EU’s commitment to international energy regulation and positions Europe as a leader in global efforts to combat climate change. Through these measures, the directive not only meets immediate environmental needs but also sets a sustainable trajectory for future energy management and economic stability in the region.

Energy Standards for Non-Residential Buildings

Under the revised Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EU/2024/1275), stringent standards are set specifically for non-residential buildings, which play a crucial role in the EU’s energy efficiency targets. While focusing on non-residential buildings, the EPBD proposes different strategies for new buildings and for existing ones.

Overall, the existing real estate in Europe is not energy efficient and that isn’t news. The EPBD wants to focus on renovations to address the lowest performing buildings so they can reduce their energy usage at first. By 2030, at least the worst 16% must have been tackled to improve their energy consumption, with the threshold rising to 26% by 2033. This progression mandates significant improvements in energy management to ensure compliance and foster substantial energy savings.

These regulations are not just about meeting benchmarks but also about integrating sustainable practices into the daily operations of businesses. The idea is to encourage further renovations not only by legislation but also with financial support

For both new and existing buildings, regular energy audits will become a norm, providing detailed insights into energy flows and identifying opportunities for energy savings. This is already happening in some countries which have included energy audits in their national laws, like in Spain. This will differ on a country by country basis. The laws will be developed by every country based on the European directive but taking into account the particular environment of each country and the existing measures. 

By adhering to these standards, non-residential buildings will not only contribute to the EU’s climate goals but also benefit from reduced energy costs and enhanced building value, proving that good energy practices are as economically advantageous as they are environmentally necessary.

When will this be effective? There’s a two-year period now for countries to transpose into national legislation.

Zero Emission Requirements for New Buildings

Starting in 2028, all new public buildings within the EU must comply with zero-emission standards, expanding to include all new constructions by 2030.

This directive mandates that these buildings not only maintain high energy performance but also meet their energy needs through renewable sources, effectively reducing on-site carbon emissions to zero. This is expected to be achieved by:

  • Installing on-site renewable energy generation, mainly solar 
  • Supplying any additional energy needs with energy from renewable sources

This initiative is a significant component of the EU’s broader strategy for decarbonisation. It is closely linked to the Energy Directive for Energy Efficiency and the overall Fit for 55 Strategy. It also falls under the Energy Efficiency First principle, that shows a switched focus from energy generation into energy usage and reduction of demand.

If we look worldwide beyond the EU, it aligns with global trends in energy regulation and energy efficiency. For instance, many cities in California, like Santa Monica, have implemented all-electric building codes, banning gas infrastructure in new buildings and promoting electric alternatives that contribute to substantial energy savings. You can see that sustainability initiatives take different shapes in different areas of the world. But with the same goal to reduce energy consumption, to be more sustainable and generate greener economic opportunities.

At Spacewell Energy we recognise the pivotal role software and smart building solutions play in supporting renovations for energy efficiency. By integrating advanced energy management systems, we can help you meet and exceed the requirements set forth by the EU’s revised Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Our technology enables real-time monitoring and control of energy use, which is essential for conducting thorough energy audits and ensuring ongoing energy savings.

Do you want to know more about the benefits of an EMS for your business? Get in touch with us and let’s discuss how you can start to save energy and costs.

Data-driven ESG Strategy Facilities Management - GUIDE - Spacewell Energy