European Commission refers Czech Republic and Slovenia to CJEU over building energy performance

The European Commission decided to refer the Czech Republic and Slovenia to the Court of Justice of the EU for failing to comply with the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive.

Under the directive, member States must establish and apply minimum energy performance requirements for all buildings, ensure the certification of buildings’ energy performance and require the regular inspection of heating and air conditioning systems. In addition, the directive requires member states to ensure that all new buildings are so-called nearly zero-energy buildings by 2021.

The directive also requires member states to ensure that energy performance certificates are displayed in certain buildings frequently visited by the public. This rule should create public awareness of the importance of efficient energy consumption and provide incentives for renovations.

The commission drew the attention of the national authorities to the incorrect transposition of this requirement as early as 2015 and sent official letters to both member states in 2017 and 2018.

The EU is aiming for a 20 per cent cut in Europe’s annual primary energy consumption by 2020. Buildings account for about 40 per cent of the EU’s total final energy consumption and more than one third of its CO2 emissions. By properly transposing and implementing the legislation on energy efficiency in buildings, member states can achieve a significant amount of cost effective energy savings and avoid related greenhouse gas emissions.