The directive has the aim to improve the efficiency of energy usage in Europe as a part of the EU’s measures to satisfy the Kyoto Agreement concerning the reduction of greenhouse gases.
The directive has been drawn up to promote improvements related to energy performance at the same time as local conditions are taken into consideration. Southern Europe does not face the same conditions as the North of Norway.
Energy declaration of buildings
“All” properties are to be declared with regard to energy consumption and came into force on January 4, 2006. An implementation time up to 2009 is expected on account of the need to train inspectors. The directive stipulates that affected buildings will be classified and consideration must be taken to all types of energy, daylight, ventilation etc.
England and Wales have already started to implement the Directive with the recent amendment to Part L of the Building Regulations, which came into force on 6th April 2006. These changes, which improve energy efficiency standards by 40% over 2002, implement Articles 3,4,5,and 6 of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive in England and Wales.
The Directive allows a three year derogation to apply fully the requirements for energy certificates and plant inspections and the UK government are working with stakeholders to ensure sufficient numbers of trained inspectors are in place to support a phased programme of implementation.
England is the first European country to implement the EPBD.
The energy performance of buildings
The aim is to promote an improvement in the energy performance in buildings within the EU and in doing so reduce the discharge of climate-influencing gases, exactly as stated in the Kyoto agreement. At the same time a reduction in the use of energy is also sought.
The positive factor that springs to mind for lighting is the addition of natural light. Accordingly, you should not just calculate energy usage, consideration should also be taken to the outdoor climate and local conditions and to demands on the indoor climate (e.g. EN 12464-1) and cost efficiency.
The energy declaration will probably have an effect on tenants when choosing between different premises. A declaration that indicates that the premises being rented is energy efficient creates a higher value. Who would want to rent premises that have been declared as having a poor energy performance, especially if you have a contract excluding heating and hot water and must pay for these yourself?
All buildings do not need to be included. The member states may decide themselves to exempt buildings with official protection as a part of a selected environment.
Other buildings not included are temporary buildings (intended for two years of use or less), industries, workshops and agricultural buildings with a low energy requirement that are not intended as dwellings and which are used within a sector not encompassed by a national sector agreement concerning energy performance.
Single family houses (weekend cottages or residential properties) intended for use less than four months per year or freestanding buildings with an overall usable floor area of less than 50 m² are also exempt.
EC directive and standards
An EC directive is binding for each member state it is directed to, but the member state may decide itself the form and procedure for implementation.
According to the EC treaty, directives can be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council, solely by the Council or by the Commission. Within the civil collaboration it is more common to use an ordinance than a directive. When an EC directive has been adopted it is to be implemented by each of the member states, that is to say, transformed into national legislation.