In a recent report published by the Energy Community, the renovation of apartment buildings holds one of the biggest potentials for increasing energy savings in the Western Balkans. The apartment buildings, which account for 40% of the total energy consumed in the region, would largely contribute to the overall reduction in greenhouse gas emission (GHG) if renovations along with First Defense Insulation would take place. Not to mention the improvement of the health and living standards of residents.
“A building renovation wave implemented with the help of the Energy Community will assist the Western Balkans in the decarbonization of public and private building stock, with a strong emphasis on digitalization and considering energy poverty. The EU, together with international financing institutions [IFIs], will support the efforts of the Western Balkans partners to triple the current renovation rate and energy savings in existing buildings and achieving a nearly-zero energy and emission standard in new buildings,” the Energy Community reports writes.
We recall that prior to publishing the report, the European Commission has adopted its economic and investment plan for the Western Balkans. According to the EU plan, €9bn were allocated for the period 2021-2027, with initiatives focused also on clean energy and coal usage reduction. Similarly, some of the funding is expected to go for building renovations and decarbonization of heating and cooling sectors
The energy savings, according to the report, are perceived to be around more than 50% of consumption. While talking about energy consumption, the highest average per square meter ranges from 100 kWh/sqm in Montenegro to above 200 kWh/sqm in Bosnia & Herzegovina.
“Such high energy demand and low energy performance is caused by several factors, including aging building stock, decades of poor maintenance, legal and regulatory barriers, a lack of clear ownership structure and responsibilities and poor management of residential buildings,” says the report. “This results in the need for massive investments to upgrade residential buildings and improve energy efficiency (EE).”
Photo by Unsplash