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July 19, 2023

Shedding Light on Energy Label Changes

What do the EPBD Amendments mean

The European Union’s recent substantial modifications to the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) law signal developments that will have an impact on a number of building sector stakeholders. Owners of real estate in all sectors will be impacted by the legislative changes. This blog article clarifies the effects of the EPBD changes for real estate owners while taking into account how the energy label landscape is changing, how legitimate existing labels are, and how new labels are being promoted.

Summary of the EPBD Amendments and their impact on real estate sustainability

The European Union’s energy efficiency legislation is largely based on the EPBD. The recent amendments change three key elements that will directly impact property owners.

1) Modification of Energy Labels Used: The change in energy labels is one of the key improvements made by the EPBD amendments. These labels are essential for providing users with information about how energy efficient their buildings are. However, the labels themselves are changing due to changing regulatory framework. This was made rather difficult by the different pluses in the existing energy label. Everything will be labeled A if it currently has the label A plus one or more plus points. The highest label, A+ – currently A with five pluses – will eventually be reserved for buildings that are energy neutral. 

 

2) Validity of Labels: The maximum validity time for energy labels is lowered from 10 years to 5 years under the modified EPBD. For labels A up to and including C this will remain 10 years, but for labels D and lower it will be 5 years. Buildings and units intended for residential use must have at least energy performance class E from 1st of January 2030 and at least energy performance class D from 1st of January 2033. This creates an extra incentive to take steps towards better energy performance.

 

3) Higher Label Accuracy: These new labels will place even greater emphasis on sustainability and energy efficiency. The new energy labels attempt to cover a broader range of sustainability criteria, whereas the older labels offered only a basic overview of a building’s performance. 

How this will impact BRIGHTER users

BRIGHTER users can anticipate an improved user interface  compatible with the new labeling system when changing labels. They can anticipate this shift being reflected on the product, the BRIGHTER platform supports making this update seamless.  The platform’s widget will display the new labels through our EP-Online integration feature, which allows our Dutch users to fetch their energy labels directly from the official database of all energy labels in the Netherlands. They can also track data from industry benchmarks such as CRREM (Carbon Risk Real Estate Monitor), GRESB (Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmarks) as well as BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method). Users of BRIGHTER will have access to the most thorough sustainability indicators on the market thanks to these connections! 

We are wary of big promises on the added value of energy labels. They can be a good starting point, but they may not capture the full complexity of a building’s sustainability. Only time will tell with EPBD Amendments impact on real estate sustainability. The core idea of Spectral’s BRIGHTER is to combine multiple metrics and measurements  to give users the most comprehensive insights available on the market. This strategy is consistent with the shift in focus of the EPBD amendments, which promote a more comprehensive understanding of building sustainability beyond the confines of energy labeling alone.

BRIGHTER can continue to provide its users in-depth analyses and practical advice by adapting to changes in energy labels, shortened validity periods, and the promotion of new labels. Users of BRIGHTER can leverage the platform’s features to efficiently manage these changes and make sure their buildings continue to be energy efficient and environmentally friendly as it addresses the changing landscape of building sustainability!

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