Via EUREC Members EURAC research. Photo source: flickr
What does nZEB mean?
It means a very high energy performance building with nearly zero or very low amount of energy required that should be covered by on-site or nearby energy production from renewable sources. Currently, it is not so easy to achieve the nZEB target. EU supports and finances several programs, initiatives and projects aiming to promote and sharing the knowledge and best practices in technical, financial and management development processes for high efficient buildings.
The “eCentral” project
This European project financed by Interreg Central Europe program aims at supporting public authorities to increase their capacity on nZEB target implementation and development. How? Through intensive transnational cooperation and exchanges of positive practices between experts coming from several regions.
The buildings experts survey
In order to identify the state of the art of the nZEB target implementation in the renovation processes of existing buildings, Eurac Research together with the other project partners, organised a survey for buildings experts, which included the participation of 48 experts.
The results of the survey are available on the eCentral project webiste. The results in bullet points:
- It is necessary to increase the initiatives to rise the knowledge of the involved stakeholders from the design-construction to utilization-maintenance phase.
- Energy Performance Certification (EPC) is a crucial instrument to enhance the energy performance of the buildings (art. 11-13 of Directive 2010/31/EU). EPC tells us which is the energy performance of a building, its annual energy consumption, and how much energy comes from renewable sources.
- Regarding the economic instruments dedicated to energy renovation: not only public funds but also grants, incentives, energy efficiency obligations and white certificates are needed to reach the full potential of nZEB standard. Innovative third-party financing and investing models such as Public Private Partnerships, Energy Performance Contracting and crowdfunding could be interesting solutions that need to be developed at a larger scale.