FOURTH FORUM EVENT
The topic for this fourth event was “Training Local Authorities and Property Owners in Retrofitting Heritage Buildings”. The event was seeking to elicit the views of local private property owners’ associations and municipalities members of the Covenant of Mayor in jointly undertaking retrofit programs for heritage buildings.
Historic buildings are the trademark of numerous European cities, towns and villages: historic quarters give uniqueness to our cities; they are a living symbol of Europe’s rich cultural heritage and reflect society’s identity. Yet, this is also an area where the high level of energy inefficiency is contributing to a huge percentage of greenhouse gas emissions. With climate change posing a real and urgent threat to humanity and its surroundings, also to historic buildings, it is necessary to guide an improved approach to all refurbishment actions in historic buildings.
Integration of historic buildings in the EPBD will be a driving force in striving towards the ambitious energy saving goals the EU has set. Currently, most EPBD requirements exclude formally listed historic buildings. Evidently conservation aspects make it less evident to demand energy efficiency targets when historic buildings undergo major renovation. But there are alternatives thinkable which encourages the choice for energy saving measures, without asking for the impossible. For instance, the EPBD can require that during the renovation process of historic buildings the technical, environmental and economic feasibility of various energy saving measures is considered. The EPBD won’t require the implementation of these measures, regardless of the outcome of such analysis. But measures that turn out to be feasible stand a higher chance of being implemented than when they would not have been considered at all.
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