Energy efficiency improved

Directive 2002/91/EC on the energy performance of buildings came into force on 4 January, with the aim of ensuring that new and renovated buildings are constructed to high standards of energy efficiency.

Around 40% of the EU's energy consumption is in the residential and commercial sectors, most of which is building-related, so addressing the problem of energy use from this source is viewed as an important part of the EU's climate change policy. The directive, which must be transposed into national law by 4 January 2006, sets out a common framework for the energy efficiency of buildings and lays down a number of requirements to ensure that action is taken by member states.

New buildings are to meet these standards and the feasibility of systems such as combined heat and power (CHP) have to be considered for larger buildings. For existing buildings, member states must ensure that when a large building undergoes major renovation, its energy performance is improved to meet minimum standards where feasible.

Further information

Directive 2002/91/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2002 on the energy performance of buildings, OJ L1, 4.1.2003, available from: #



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