This position paper calls on the European Commission to integrate the notion of neighbourhood approach in the EU building and energy efficiency policy framework, in the national programmes for buildings renovations and in the upcoming Renovation Wave strategy.
The current energy efficiency legislative framework in buildings already refers to the notion of a district or neighbourhood approach, in particular in Art.19, §2, of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD).
While the article refers to 2026, given the multiple benefits of a neighbourhood approach and the need for accelerating our climate actions, the EU should prioritize the integration of this principle in its climate and energy framework and any new initiatives linked to renovation and decarbonization. This is all the more relevant, as the main challenge today is not so much the construction of new buildings as the renovation of the existing ones.
We need to make sure that the renovation policies deliver fast and concrete results in terms of increased energy efficiency and overall system efficiency, reduced energy consumption and reduced GHG emissions. A neighbourhood approach could help us achieve these goals and the overall objective of a highly energy efficient and decarbonized building stock.