A key policy area
The EUs energy policy is one of the key areas where the IUT is actively working to watch and enhance the interests of the tenants across Europe. The EU webpage Clean Energy for all Europeans, adopted in 2019, gives the background.
The building sector is crucial for achieving the EU’s energy and environmental goals. At the same time, better and more energy-efficient buildings aim to improve the quality of citizens’ life and alleviate energy poverty while bringing additional benefits, such as health and better indoor comfort levels, and green jobs, to the economy and society.
To boost the energy performance of buildings, the EU has established a legislative framework that includes the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive and the Energy Efficiency Directive.
Together, the directives promote policies with the aim to:
- achieve a highly energy efficient and decarbonised building stock by 2050
- create a stable environment for investment decisions
- enable consumers and businesses to make more informed choices to save energy and money
In December 2021, the Commission proposed a revision of the directive. It upgrades the existing regulatory framework to reflect higher ambitions and more pressing needs in climate and social action. A revision of the Energy Efficiency Directive is also underway in the EU.
These directives form the framework for national energy legislation on new construction and renovation building standards, like passive houses, low and zero energy houses as well as energy performance certificates. Therefore, they will directly affect the costs of housing. Part of the directives is also the training of tenants and residents in energy-saving measures.
As a key stakeholder at the EU level, IUT will formally contribute to the legislative process, encouraging member unions to participate in the relevant hearings, workshops and meetings with the EU institutions. IUT will also continue to explore opportunities to join EU founded Projects.
As part of its public policy work, we have published several claims and contributions to the legislative process:
- The International Union of Tenants (IUT ) calls for help for tenants to prevent a worsening of the European housing crisisStateme
- A tenant-friendly EU Green Deal, 11 claims by the IUT towards the EU Green Deal (2021)
- Views of the IUT on the revision of the Energy Performance Buildings Directive (2022) (available in German)
- IUTs answer to the Energy Efficiency Directive report of the European Parliament (2022)
Updates from the EU on energy policy are available here.
EU Policy on Energy
The European Union’s energy policies are driven by three main objectives:
- to secure energy supplies to ensure the reliable provision of energy whenever and wherever it is needed
- to ensure that energy providers operate in a competitive environment that ensures affordable prices for homes, businesses, and industries
- to ensure energy consumption is sustainable, through the lowering of greenhouse gas emissions, pollution, and fossil fuel dependence.
The Directorate-General for Energy is responsible for developing and implementing a European energy policy under the political guidance of the European Commission Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans, and the Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson.
The Directorate General develops and implements innovative policies aimed at:
- contributing to setting up an energy market providing citizens and businesses with affordable energy, competitive prices and technologically advanced energy services
- promoting sustainable energy production, transport and consumption in line with the EU 2020 targets and with a view to the 2050 decarbonisation objective
- enhancing the conditions for a safe and secure energy supply in a spirit of solidarity between EU countries ensuring a high degree of protection for European citizens
A selection of news and papers relating to energy policy:
- European Commission: Energy news
- European Commission: Studies on Energy
- Feeds Forum – White Paper on Residential Electrical Safety 2017
- IUT and BEUC – Policy recommendations on strengthening the social dimension of the Energy Union, Tenants’ access to solar self-consumption (2017)
- Informal meeting of energy and transport ministers in the EU 2017
- The launch of the European Energy Poverty Observatory in January 2018
- Technical guidance, Financing the energy renovation of buildings with Cohesion Policy funding (European Commission, 2014)
- 10 Energy Policy Recommendations of the International Union of Tenants
- Concerning the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive
Open letter to the 27 EU energy and environmental ministers, November 2009.
- Energy-saving in the Housing Corporation Sector
“Energy contract”: Covenant on energy-saving in the Dutch Housing Corporation Sector.
- Energy Union Package
European Commission February 2015.
- How the European Regional Development Fund can be used for Energy-Efficiency
IUT on how 8 billion euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) can be used for the energy-efficient refurbishment of the existing housing stock. April 2009.
- IUT on the Energy Performance Buildings Directive
Recast of the Energy Performance Buildings Directive
IUT proposed amendments, February 2009.
- IUT on the Renewable Energy Directive (June 2008)
- More Transparency and Objectivity for Tenants
Tenants shall have full access to the building’s energy certificate when considering a new flat. New EU Energy Performance Buildings Directive (EPBD). May 2010.
- Report from FES and IUT Conference
Energy efficient renovation of low-income households – just a drop in the bucket? April 2014-2015.
- The EU Commission Proposition on Energy Efficiency
The EU Commission proposes measures to boost energy efficiency and renewable energy in low-income households, in December 2008.