In its reply to the consultation EBC acknowledged that the Energy Performance of Building Directive (EPBD) has been key in forcing Member States to define energy efficiency objectives for new buildings and ways to achieve the objectives.
However, EBC also recalled that the current EPBD does not set any goals for the renovation of existing buildings and that EU renovation rates are very low. The lack of knowledge and information by both clients and financial institutions is still an issue and can partly explain the low renovation rates.
For clients, upfront costs are a real obstacle, especially since return on investment requires a fairly long time. To overcome this issue, EBC asked for incentive mechanisms to be strengthened.
In its reply, EBC also focused on the essential issue of training. It is important that informal training schemes in some cases are considered equally important to formal qualification requirements. Through continuous vocational trainings, qualification and certification of professionals and skilled technicians, the construction sector can comply with the EPBD.
EBC concluded that at EU and national level the legislative framework should stabilise to avoid uncertainties and fragmentation. Both the industry and the consumers need long term measures to gain confidence in the market and have time to adapt.