The Building & Construction impact area is very promising in term of future contribution to Sustainability and incremental reduction of the overall footprint. Overseas, in the US, commercial and industrial buildings used roughly 50% of the total energy consumption at a cost of over $400 billion per year. In this context, the US Government launched the Better Buildings Initiative in 2011, aiming at making commercial and industrial buildings 20% more energy efficient within 10 years, promoting collaboration between public and private to enhance investment in energy efficiency while creating new market opportunities that could create tens of thousands of jobs.
In the EU, buildings are responsible for 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions.
Considering that about 35% of the EU’s buildings are over 50 years old, retrofitting these buildings could reduce total EU energy consumption by 5% to 6% and lower CO2 emissions by about 5%. Currently, two key laws focus on reducing the energy consumption of buildings in the EU: the 2010 Energy Performance of Buildings Directive and the 2012 Energy Efficiency Directive. Both regulatory frameworks aim at promoting the construction of nearly zero emission buildings, while setting minimum energy performance requirements for new or renovated buildings and requiring Member States to define longterm national building renovation strategies and introduce financial tools to support energy efficient solutions in governmental, commercial and residential sectors.
Considering the wide range of cost effective efficiency improvements available on the market today, the implementation of Sustainable technologies, combining smart solutions with renewable sources, can really make the difference in terms of innovation, cost savings and avoided emissions, while creating jobs and contributing building a stronger and more resilient economy.