Contributions of Building Retrofitting in Five Member States to EU Targets for Energy Savings
Review article, 2018

To benchmark the contributions of building retrofits to the National Energy Efficiency Action Plans (NEEAPs) of the Member States (MS) of the European Union (EU) and to identify potential improvements to the general EU methodology, this paper presents homogenous mapping of the potential for energy savings and associated effects on CO2 emissions for the building stocks of five selected MS: France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The mapping is created using a verified building stock modeling methodology, and includes results related to technical and techno-economical improvements for ten energy conservation measures (ECMs) and six ECM packages. These results are compared to the corresponding estimates in the NEEAPs, as well as those in the literature. Although both our results and those in the literature show high variability for the cost-efficiency of the ECMs between the five national building stocks, the potential application of complete ECM packages generally appears to be more profitable than the application of individual ECMs. Certain challenges must be overcome before this potential can be realized. The energy savings for Year 2020 projected in the NEEAPs appear to be overly optimistic when one considers the efficiency trends, current regulatory framework, and techno-economical potential detailed in this study. Furthermore, the NEEAPs are not in full compliance with the requirements of the EU Energy Efficiency Directive. These requirements could be defined more specifically, so as to address the identified information gaps, thereby facilitating the implementation and monitoring of energy savings in existing buildings.

Bottom-up estimates

CO2 mitigation

EU buildings


Energy conservation measures


Erika Mata

IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute

Angela Sasic Kalagasidis

Chalmers, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Building Technology

Filip Johnsson

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Energy Technology

Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews

1364-0321 (ISSN) 18790690 (eISSN)

Vol. 93 759-774

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Building Futures (2010-2018)


Subject Categories

Energy Engineering

Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified

Climate Research



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7/5/2021 1