Long-term renovation strategies are crucial to the Renovation Wave, yet many member states are over a year late and most of those that delivered did bad work

Under the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive, member states have to submit long-term renovation strategies (LTRS) to the Commission. This process is now much more important than in the past, because the Commission was counting on the LTRSs to help it decide what the member states cannot handle separately and therefore needs to be in the new EU legislation.

That's not going to happen. Not only did almost nobody deliver on time by 10 March 2020, but even today only 19 have done so and most of them did it badly:

  • The national civil servants who wrote the strategies were careful to conform formally to the EPBD requirements for LTRS content, but were low on detail. Two examples among many: An ambitious renovation plan, but few budget details (Ireland, p. 110); or clear milestones for total near-zero energy building stock, but with current renovation running five times below what's required and no clarity on how the gap will be bridged (Estonia, p. 78)
  • There is low comparability between LTRSs because of variations in the nature of the data.
  • And wild variations in costs. How is it that Estonia predicts costs of € 22 billion to reach the 2050 goal (p. 81) and Finland 24 billion (p. 88) when Finland is five times bigger? And it can't be because demolition is a big part of the Finnish strategy because the Estonians are planning a lot of that too.

The Commission isn't waiting: the new legislation will be tabled in the second half of this year. Which doesn't mean it has lost interest in the LTRSs because it says three different times (par. 3, 4 & 5, p.5) that member states won't get any Cohesion Funding without LTRSs (they're supposed to inform decisions on the building renovation part of the 37% of the funding that has to be for green projects).

EPF Secretariat report under epf21-19 of 08.04.2021