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emissions reduction

On 17 April 2019, the European Parliament and Council adopted Regulation (EU) 2019/631 introducing CO2 emission standards for new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles in the EU. This regulation set reduction targets of -15% and -37.5% for the tailpipe CO2 emissions of newly-registered passenger cars for the years 2025 and 2030 respectively. In 2023, the European Commission will review the Regulation, reporting back to the European Parliament and Council on the progress made towards reaching the car CO2 targets. Amongst other things, this ‘mid-term review’ will take stock of the roll-out of charging and refuelling infrastructure for alternatively-powered vehicles, their market uptake, as well as CO2 reductions from the car fleet.

Now, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) has published the report “Making the Transition to Zero-Emission Mobility“, that tracks the availability of infrastructure and incentives, ahead of the review of the CO2 targets by the European Commission in 2023. According to the report, sales of alternatively-powered passenger cars – including electrically-chargeable, hybrid, fuel cell and natural gas-powered vehicles – will have to pick up strongly if the targets are to be achieved. To stimulate these sales, governments across the EU need to ramp up investments in charging and refuelling infrastructure, and to put in place meaningful purchase incentives for consumers (such as bonus payments and premiums).

ACEA’s report shows that in 2018 there were less than 145,000 charging points for electrically-chargeable vehicles (ECVs) available throughout the entire European Union. Although this is three times more than five years ago, it still falls far short of the at least 2.8 million charging points that will be required by 2030, which translates into a 20-fold increase in the next decade.

But it is not only the overall lack of infrastructure that poses a problem, it is also the huge imbalance in its distribution across the EU. Indeed, four countries covering roughly one quarter of the EU’s total surface area – the Netherlands, Germany, France and the UK – account for more than 75% of all ECV charging points.

In addition, there is a clear link between the market uptake of ECVs and the number of charging points per 100km of road: almost all EU countries with less than 1 charging point per 100 km of road also have an ECV market share of under 1%.

Another major issue is affordability. The new ACEA data shows that the market uptake of electrically-chargeable vehicles is also directly correlated to a country’s standard of living. All EU member states with an ECV market share that is less than 1% have a GDP per capita below €29,000. That includes many countries in Central and Eastern Europe, but also Greece, Italy and Spain.

Key findings

Market uptake of alternatively-powered cars

  • 2% of all cars sold in 2018 were electrically-chargeable (+1.4 percentage points since 2014).
  • 3.8% of new passenger cars in the EU were hybrid electric last year (+2.4 percentage points over the last five years).
  • 0.4% of all cars sold in 2018 were natural gas-powered (-0.4 percentage points since 2014).
  • Fuel cell vehicles currently account for a negligible share of total EU car sales.

CO2 emissions of new passenger cars

  • In 2017, petrol cars became the most sold type in the EU for the first time since 2009.
  • 2017 also marked the first increase (+0.3%) in CO2 from new cars since records began.
  • 2018 saw an even bigger drop in diesel sales, and a stronger surge in demand for petrol, resulting in a 1.8% increase of new-car CO2 emissions.

Affordability

  • The market uptake of electrically-chargeable vehicles (ECVs) is directly correlated to a country’s GDP per capita, showing that affordability is a major barrier to consumers.
  • All countries with an ECV market share of less than 1% have a GDP below €29,000, including EU member states in Central and Eastern Europe, but also Spain, Italy and Greece.
  • An ECV share of above 3.5% only occurs in countries with a GDP of more than €42,000.
  • Only 12 EU countries offer bonus payments or premiums to buyers of ECVs. These purchase incentives, and especially their monetary value, differ greatly across the European Union.
  • Expanding the scope to also include tax exemptions and reductions (ie related to acquisition and ownership), four member states do not offer any tax benefits or incentives for ECVs at all.

Infrastructure availability

  • Although there has been a strong growth in the deployment of ECV infrastructure, the total number of charging points available across the EU (144,000) falls far short of what is required.
  • According to conservative estimates by the European Commission, at least 2.8 million charging points will be needed by 2030. That is a 20-fold increase within the next 12 years.
  • Four countries covering 27% of the EU’s total surface area – the Netherlands, Germany, France and the UK – account for 76% of all ECV charging points in the EU.
  • Almost all EU member states with less than 1 charging point per 100 km of road have an ECV market share of under 1%.
  • There were just 47 hydrogen filling stations available across 11 EU countries in 2018.
  • 17 member states did not have a single hydrogen filling station.
  • There are some 3,400 natural gas filling stations in the EU, up 17.5% since 2014.
  • Two-thirds of these filling points are concentrated in two countries (Italy and Germany).

Source: ACEA

As part of the 10th annual World Green Building Week, the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) has issued a bold new vision for how buildings and infrastructure around the world can reach 40% less embodied carbon emissions by 2030, and achieve 100% net zero emissions buildings by 2050.

Together, building and construction are responsible for 39% of all carbon emissions in the world , with operational emissions (from energy used to heat, cool and light buildings) ac-counting for 28%. The remaining 11% comes from embodied carbon emissions, or ‘upfront’ carbon that is associated with materials and construction processes throughout the whole building lifecycle. WorldGBC’s vision to fully decarbonise the sector requires eliminating both operational and embodied carbon emissions.

The ‘Bringing embodied carbon upfront’ report proposes this ambitious goal alongside solutions to accelerate immediate action by the entire building and construction value chain. The vision is endorsed by representatives from developers and construction companies, financial institutions, city networks and government, as well as industry representatives from concrete, steel and timber and many more including: HeidelbergCement, Skanska, Stora Enso, Google and the Finnish Government.

The report sets out to demystify the challenge of addressing embodied carbon emissions, through breaking down complex terminology and creating a common language to set a con-sensus-built definition for net zero embodied carbon.

Embodied carbon emissions have been overlooked in the past but as shown by milestone research from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), achieving drastic cuts in all carbon emissions over the next decade is critical to keeping global temperature rise to 1.5oC. Addressing upfront carbon is therefore crucial to fighting the climate crisis, as new construction is expected to double the worlds building stock by 2060 causing an increase in the carbon emissions occurring right now. Therefore, the new report is calling for coordinated action from across the sector to dramatically change the way buildings are de-signed, built, used and deconstructed.

WGBC-2WorldGBC presents a clear pathway of actions that designers, investors, manufacturers, government, NGOs and researchers across the whole value chain can take to accelerate decarbonisation, address current market barriers and, develop low carbon alternative solutions for market. However, the report warns that change will not happen unless there is a radical shift in how industry works together to enable a market transformation.

The transition towards mainstream net zero carbon standards requires immediate action to achieve greater awareness, innovation, improved processes to calculate, track and report embodied carbon, voluntary reduction targets from industry and roll out of new legislation at city, national and regional level. Approaches such as maximising the use of existing assets, promoting renovation instead of demolition and seeking new circular business models that reduce reliance on carbon intensive raw materials are also needed. To kick-start cross-sector collaboration, WorldGBC is calling for new national and sectoral roadmaps to be developed, such as those produced in Finland, Norway and Sweden, with strong support from industry and policymakers.

Demonstrating the feasibility of achieving zero carbon goals, the report is supported by case studies of existing best practice across the whole breadth of the building industry.

Businesses involved in design and delivery have already committed to ambitious individual or national decarbonisation strategies. For example, Skanska, a major development and construction group is making strides in enabling projects to be evaluated for full lifecycle impacts.

Materials suppliers are also taking a leading role. HeidelbergCement has committed to developing carbon neutral products by 2050, and Dalmia Bharat Cement, one of India’s leading cement manufacturers, is committed to becoming a carbon negative group by 2040.

Cities have also been instrumental in pushing for new innovations and approaches. Oslo, Norway, has a commitment to fossil free construction sites. Vancouver, Canada, has mandated that embodied carbon be reduced in new buildings by 40% by 2030, as part of its climate emergency response, demonstrating the type of regulatory frameworks that can drive market change.

The report has been generously supported by the European Climate Foundation and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation. It was delivered in partnership with World Green Building Council’s technical partner Ramboll, and delivery partner C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group.

Source: World Green Building Council (WorldGBC)

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Planned and designed at European level to be an incentive to the development of renewable energies, the Guarantee of Origin system begins to gain importance with the increase of its demand and its price. According to AleaSoft, the price of certificates will tend to rise and will be important in the development of new renewable projects.

Renewable energy producers can apply to the CNMC for a certificate of the energy generated. These certificates show that those kWh were generated from renewable energy sources. There are also Guarantees of Origin for high efficiency cogeneration. These certificates can be transferred to electricity retail companies so that they can justify to their customers the renewable origin of the energy supplied.

Guarantees of Origin were conceived as a tool to provide transparency and guarantee the origin of the electricity generated, and thus encourage the development of renewable technologies. Based on the European directive that mandated the states to ensure that “the origin of electricity produced from renewable energy sources can be guaranteed as such according to objective, transparent and non-discriminatory criteria”, each country of the European Union has regulated the issuance and transfer of Guarantee of Origin certificates.

In 2017, the CNMC issued Guarantees of Origin for 76,683 GWh from renewable sources and 1,803 GWh for high efficiency cogeneration, 81.2% of which were transferred to marketers to cover all or part of their retailed energy.

The mix of energy sources of each retailer will depend on the fraction of their energy covered with the certificates received. With the rest of the energy produced and not covered by Guarantees of Origin, the CNMC calculates a generic mix for the rest of the retailers.

In Spain, the issuance of Guarantees of Origin by the CNMC is free of charge, but the regulation does not allow renewable facilities that receive state subsidies to profit from their transfer. Consequently, in Spain the market of Guarantees of Origin has been traditionally unattractive and with prices of few cents of euro per MWh, very low compared with other European countries where the prices were around 0.20 ‑ 0.30 €/MWh. But this has been changing as there are more renewable plants to market without economic incentives and with the affiliation of the CNMC to the AIB (Association of Issuing Bodies) that manages the trade of Guarantees of Origin in Europe. According to AleaSoft, the Guarantees of Origin will have an important role as an incentive in the new renewable projects since their price will tend to increase in the coming years.

But not everybody thinks that the Guarantees of Origin system is perfect. Its detractors denounce that it is usually used in a deceptive way to confuse the consumer about the origin of the electricity that physically arrives at its meter. Since the issuance and acquisition of certificates does not influence the pool energy mix, which will only depend on the availability of renewable resources at each moment, it is implied that it does not encourage the installation of more renewable power.

What is certain is that the Guarantees of Origin provide transparency for the consumers that allows them to know the environmental impact associated with the energy consumed, and provides more resources to choose the retailer. In addition, for the market, it represents an indication of the demand that exists among consumers to be supplied with renewable energy. And we are not only talking about domestic consumers who are aware of climate change. Since major consumers of electricity such as Google, Facebook and Apple began to announce that they would work to make their electricity consumption 100% from renewable sources, a “green wave” worldwide is leading large companies to also propose a total green electricity consumption. And this “green wave” will continue to spread in cascade as these companies begin to also ask for green certifications to their suppliers. All this has already made the demand for Guarantees of Origin to grow and, consequently, also their price, which, according to AleaSoft, will continue to rise in the medium and long term.

For AleaSoft, the current scenario presents a future where Guarantees of Origin are going to play an important role in the Energy Transition, thanks to the new renewable projects to meet the emission reduction objectives and the increasingly widespread awareness of consumers and retailers about the environmental impact of electricity production.

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The Global call for start-ups will be awarding fifteen of the most innovative, sustainable energy start-ups a tailored package of added-value services and a €100,000 cash prize will be awarded to the best one.

To support our work with the European Battery Alliance (EBA), they hope to attract and support start-ups with innovative technology or business model concepts focused on electric storage. Of particular interest are electric storage innovations for application in transportation, for grid, distributed and mobile energy storage, or to deliver energy efficiency improvements and emissions reductions.

Successful applicants will receive a place on one of InnoEnergy’s business creation programmes – the Highway™ or Boostway™ – and a tailored package of support, training, services and funding. The Highway™ uses a hands-on approach to support early stage start-ups in the go-to-market phase, helping ready products for commercialisation. The Boostway™ programme supports scale-ups to grow their businesses.

Launched in 2017, the EBA seeks to create a competitive and sustainable battery cell manufacturing value chain in Europe. We are working with more than 120 stakeholders within the EBA to achieve this ambition and help develop a new market that could be worth €250 billion a year by 2025.

Elena Bou, innovation Director at InnoEnergy, says: “Acting as a trusted partner, we’re here to give businesses the lift off they need to reach commercialisation. Through our unique ecosystem we offer start-ups unparalleled access to everything they need to make a resounding business success of their innovative ideas.”

Successful applicants will gain access to a network of more than 385 partners and including specialist business angels, InnoEnergy’s European VC community and public funding bodies. Start-ups also gain board-level advice and mentorship and a front-row seat at European energy events, including The Business Booster – InnoEnergy’s annual networking event where companies across the energy value chain attend to meet start-ups and innovations under one roof.

Bo Normark, InnoEnergy’s thematic leader for energy storage adds: “Europe needs innovative electric storage solutions to support the decarbonisation of transport and heat through electrification. It is our mission to find businesses with unique and innovative concepts, products and solutions that have the potential to be part of the sustainable battery cell manufacturing value chain.”

The call for start-ups is open until 30 October 2018. The application process consists of five phases; an initial application, an internal evaluation, a five-minute video pitch and an external expert assessment. Following the external assessment 30 applicants will pitch their idea to two parallel juries, and 15 winners will be selected. At the celebration event in February one winner will be awarded a prize of €100,000.

Applicants will be evaluated against the following criteria:

Innovativeness of the business idea
Value proposition
Addressable market size
Scalability of product/service
Founding team and ownership structure
Competitive advantage
Impact potential
Ability to leverage on InnoEnergy as a partner

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With a total capacity of 6.063 MWp, Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited has commissioned the largest solar power project in a refinery site. The solar power project is spread across 34 rooftops within the refinery premises comprising both RCC and sloping sheet steel roofs. These solar plants generate more than 24,000 kWh per day amounting to more than 8.8 million MWh per annum.

TATA Power did the engineering procurement and construction of this project. Thanks to its high efficiency and reliable quality, 95 GoodWe string inverters are selected by TATA power in the project. GoodWe MT Series inverters (50-70 kW) are specially tailored for C&I solar market with 30% DC input oversizing and a continuous maximum AC output power overload of 15%, which can be successfully deployed on large scale commercial rooftops and ground-mounted solar PV plants and can help further reduce installation costs while its power boost function provides higher yield and a faster ROI.

Along with the idea of energy-saving and emission-reduction becoming popular in India, 2 GW solar capacity is expected in this year in its commercial and industrial markets. With significant growth of supply to Indian market, GoodWe is aware of the importance of offering an unparalleled after-sales service to win long-term business. GoodWe has already set up its Indian office in Mumbai and till today has built up a local team of 10 people mainly for service, and there are more to join.

Source: GoodWe

A report recently published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) shows that there is still serious underinvestment in electric vehicle recharging infrastructure across Europe, with only one in three EU member states providing incentives.

According to the EEA report, specific incentives for electric vehicle charging points were found in only 10 out of the EU28. The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) cautions that investments need to be stepped up, as future reductions of CO2 emissions from cars and vans are strongly dependent on increased sales of electric and other alternatively-powered vehicles.

This will only happen with an EU-wide roll-out of a charging and refuelling infrastructure. As the EEA points out in its report: a sufficient charging infrastructure is required to give people the confidence that fully electric vehicles will reliably meet their travel needs and help reduce anxiety linked with possible limitations in range. In this respect, the Directive on Alternative Fuel Infrastructure (DAFI) set clear objectives for the 28 member states as far back as 2014. To date, however, the implementation of the DAFI by national governments has been poor.

Although electric vehicle sales have increased in line with global car sale growth in recent years, their overall market share remains low (1.4% of total EU car sales), growing by just 0.8% between 2014 and 2017.

Even though all manufacturers are expanding their portfolios of electric cars, we unfortunately see that market penetration of these vehicles is quite weak and patchy across the EU,” stated ACEA Secretary General, Erik Jonnaert. “Consumers looking for an alternative to diesel often opt for petrol or hybrid vehicles, but the large-scale switch to the EV is not yet taking place. This new EEA report confirms that a dense EU-wide charging infrastructure network is an absolute must if we want consumers throughout the EU to really embrace electric vehicles.”

Although the European Commission has acknowledged that the market uptake of alternatively-powered vehicles and infrastructure roll-out are intrinsically connected, its recent proposal on post-2021 CO2 targets for passenger cars and vans does not link the availability of charging infrastructure to the proposed CO2 objectives.

In order to reflect the reality of the market, ACEA believes that Europe’s long-term climate goals should be linked to future infrastructure availability and consumer acceptance.

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New IRENA report outlines how increasing share of renewables to 34% can boost economy, and help meet emission reductions goals

The EU can increase the share of renewable energy in its energy mix to 34 per cent by 2030 – double the share in 2016 – with a net positive economic impact, finds a report by IRENA, launched in Brussels.

Presenting the findings during a launch event, ‘Renewable Energy Prospects for the European Union’ – developed at the request of the European Commission – IRENA’s Director-General Mr. Adnan Z. Amin highlighted that achieving higher shares of renewable energy is possible with today’s technology, and would trigger additional investments of around EUR 368 billion until 2030 – equal to an average annual contribution of 0.3 per cent of the GDP of the EU. The number of people employed in the sector across the EU – currently 1.2 million – would grow significantly under a revised strategy.

Raising the share of renewable energy would help reduce emissions by a further 15 per cent by 2030 – an amount equivalent to Italy’s total emissions. These reductions would bring the EU in line with its goal to reduce emissions by 40 per cent compared to 1990 levels, and set it on a positive pathway towards longer-term decarbonisation. The increase would result in savings of between EUR 44 billion and EUR 113 billion per year by 2030, when accounting for savings related to the cost of energy, and avoided environmental and health costs.

“For decades now, through ambitious long-term targets and strong policy measures, Europe has been at the forefront of global renewable energy deployment,” said IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin. “With an ambitious and achievable new renewable energy strategy, the EU can deliver market certainty to investors and developers, strengthen economic activity, grow jobs, improve health and put the EU on a stronger decarbonisation pathway in line with its climate objectives.”

Welcoming the timeliness of the report, Mr. Miguel Arias Cañete, European Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action said: “The report confirms our own assessments that the costs of renewables have come down significantly in the last couple of years, and that we need to consider these new realities in our ambition levels for the upcoming negotiations to finalise Europe’s renewable energy policies.”

The report highlights that all EU Member States have additional cost-effective renewable energy potential, noting that renewable heating and cooling options account for more than one-third of the EU’s additional renewables potential. Furthermore, all renewable transport options will be needed to realise EU’s long-term decarbonisation objectives.

Additional key findings from the report, include:

  • Reaching a 34% renewable share by 2030 would require an estimated average investment in renewable energy of around EUR 62 billion per year.
  • The renewable energy potential identified would result in 327 GW of installed wind capacity an additional 97 GW compared to business as usual, and 270 GW of solar, an 86 GW increase on business as usual.
  • Accelerated adoption of heat pumps and electric vehicles would increase electricity to 27 per cent of total final energy consumption, up from 24 per cent in a business as usual scenario.
  • The share of renewable energy in the power sector would rise to 50 per cent by 2030, compared to 29 per cent in 2015.
  • In end-use sectors, renewable energy would account for 42 per cent of energy in buildings, 36 per cent in industry and 17 per cent in transport.
  • All renewable transport options are needed, including electric vehicles and – both advanced and conventional – biofuels to realise long-term EU decarbonisation objectives.

The report is a contribution to the ongoing discussions on the European Commission’s ‘Clean Energy for All Europeans’ package, tabled in November 2016, which proposed a framework to support renewable energy deployment.

Renewable Energy Prospects for the European Union is part of IRENA’s renewable energy roadmap, REmap, which determines the potential for countries, regions and the world to scale up renewables to ensure an affordable and sustainable energy future. The roadmap focuses on renewable technology options in power, as well as heating, cooling and transport. The REmap study for the EU is based on deep analysis of existing REmap studies for 10 EU Member States (accounting for 73 per cent of EU energy use), complemented and aggregated with high-level analyses for the other 18 EU Member States.

DACHSER Iberia and Mercedes-Benz Trucks continue to invest in a more innovative and sustainable logistics industry, with the launch of the first 7.5 ton hybrid truck that has already started to circulate in Madrid. The FUSO Canter Eco Hybrid 7C15 non-plug hybrid vehicle, distinguished by the Spanish Traffic Institution with the ECO category, is already operational under DACHSER, in a first route that covers the heart of the center of the capital: Calle Alcalá, Carrera de San Jerónimo , Sol, Calle Mayor, Cuesta de Santo Domingo and Gran Vía.

Ecological, social and economic sustainability is deeply anchored in DACHSER’s corporate values. The company supports various initiatives aimed at discovering new solutions to optimize distribution services. One of the projects is the implementation of this hybrid vehicle within the Euro 6 standards, combining a combustion and an electric engine; a combination that will significantly reduce the CO2 emission count and guarantee fuel savings of up to 23% compared to conventional trucks. The technological participation of Mercedes-Benz Trucks has been crucial in the project, designed to validate the application of sustainable vehicles for City Distribution.

Sustainability as a future strategy

Both companies are fully aligned when it comes to environmental awareness and consider it to be an indispensable part of their long-term business vision. Regarding DACHSER, the multinational has different lines of action within its Corporate Solutions, Research & Development unit, which develops more innovative and sustainable business models to deliver to inner cities within the framework of the project ‘City Distribution’. As all cities have their own individual and special requirements, the toolbox will serve as a practical method for providing a variety of solutions to the General Managers running the operational business on a local level. They will be able to choose between the relevant concepts and apply them regionally in their metropolitan areas, flexibly and according to their needs.

For example, Munich has had a hybrid truck exactly like the one implemented in Madrid since 2014, and other cities such as Paris already have their own trucks powered by electricity and liquefied natural gas (LNG). On the other hand, city distribution in Stuttgart, Copenhagen and Amsterdam has more alternative programs aimed at optimizing logistics in the city by involving different means of transport such as electric bicycles or barges on the cities’ canals. At the beginning of the year, DACHSER announced a total investment of 177 million euros for 2017 for the extension and improvement of its network. This also includes R&D projects concerning the optimization of transport efficiency and further investments in DACHSER´s advanced IT systems.

DACHSER Iberia has not only introduced the first hybrid truck in Madrid, but has also welcomed the first long truck (25,25m) in the DACHSER Iberia fleet, that connects Madrid with Barcelona and Arteixo with Lleida with two daily routes. Juan Quintana, Managing Director European Logistics Iberia, states that “DACHSER is committed to the progressive implementation of process and customer value-orientated innovation in its network, in line with the company’s long-term strategy in Europe and with the present environmental situation, which requires an adaptation of new energies and technologies”.

The buildings in which Europeans sleep, eat, shop, learn and work, house a great opportunity for energy saving and emissions reduction, particularly in the so-called technical systems: heating, DHW, cooling, ventilation and lighting. A recent study by energy consultancy Ecofys, sponsored by Danfoss, shows the energy saving that can be achieved by improving energy management in Europe’s buildings. This hitherto under-exploited potential is calculated to save €67bn on the annual energy bill of European citizens by 2030, while reducing CO2 emissions by 156 Mt. Documents have been published as part of the study that focus on different types of buildings. This article sets out the main conclusions of the study in the case of supermarkets, along with some of the more recent success stories from Danfoss in this sector on the Iberian Peninsula.

Buildings allocated to supermarkets in Europe occupy an approximate surface area of 115 million square metres. Part of the study included an assessment of the energy saving potential of a sample supermarket with a surface area of 1,025 m2 and a total energy consumption of 181 kWh/m2a. This sample building is equipped with a gas condensing boiler for heating (with energy recovery for the refrigeration system); mechanical ventilation systems with no heat recovery; a refrigeration and air conditioning system by means of compression chillers; and a direct and indirect lighting system via fluorescent tubes.

 

Improvements to the technical systems in this sample supermarket reveal the possibility of achieving a 45% saving in energy, which translates into just over 8,000 €/year, with an investment of some €36,000 that would be amortised in around 4.5 years. Read more…

Article published in: FuturENERGY July-August 2017

The buildings where you sleep, eat, shop, learn and work hold a huge opportunity: EUR 67 billion savings on energy bills for EU citizens annually in 2030, and a reduction in emissions of 156 Mt. CO2. These groundbreaking results are presented in a study, released by energy consultancy Ecofys, a Navigant Company. The report, initiated by Danfoss, provides proof of the huge energy savings potential that can be obtained from better management of energy flows inside European buildings. A potential that has been insufficiently exploited.

We spend most of our time in buildings. It is, therefore, no surprise that buildings consume a large amount of energy. But 75% of our housing stock is energy-inefficient. Most of the vast amounts of energy is used to maintain the right temperature and air quality in heating, cooling and ventilation systems – collectively known as a technical building system.

 

When these systems are not working optimally, energy goes to waste, they cost money and cause damage to the health and the environment. But we have the technologies to prevent this. Consistent improvements could help reduce energy waste, cut costs and make our buildings better places to be. The report assesses a scenario where buildings are renovated in the period until 2030. The energy consumption in these buildings could be reduced by around 30% through upgrades to heating, cooling, ventilation, lighting and hot water systems.

We have all the technologies at hand to make our buildings smart. Taking the findings of the new Ecofys study into account, we see that optimizing the control of energy flows inside buildings and leveraging new technologies, like digitalization, could deliver around 15% of the EU 2030 energy efficiency target. Political support is needed to remove barriers and accelerate the speed and scale of the investments. This will send the right market signals for innovation, jobs and sustainable growth,” says Andre Borouchaki, Senior Vice President and CTO, Danfoss.

According to calculations by Danfoss based on the World Resources Institute’s report, Accelerating Building Efficiency, from 2016, reaching 15% of the EU 2030 energy efficiency target will create 300,000 new jobs.

The EUR 67 billion we can save annually on a full application of high performance technical building systems, mostly from not importing gas from third countries, could be invested in Europe instead, providing additional comfort and well-being for EU citizens.

The only way to significantly improve building energy efficiency is to focus on existing buildings. Nine out of ten of existing buildings in the EU will be occupied by 2050. Renovation of our building stock is more affordable than many currently believe. The investment cost for basic improvements of controls of energy flows inside buildings is low, and the payback time is two years to get the basics right.

The consistent optimization of the energy use of technical building systems in existing buildings across Europe should start now,” says Dr. Andreas Hermelink, Associate Director at Ecofys, a Navigant Company. “We are talking about no-regret measures that can quickly deliver very significant reductions of energy consumption, energy bills and CO2 emissions. The revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive should give a strong and effective push for unleashing the full cost-effective savings potential of technical building systems.

Source: Danfoss

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