Ahead of the publication of the Renovation Wave Initiative this September, the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) adopted on 6 July and with a substantial majority MEP Cuffe’s own Initiative Report on Maximising energy efficiency of the EU building stock. The European Panel Federation (EPF), the European Federation of the Parquet Industry (FEP) and the European Organisation of the Sawmill Industry (EOS) warmly welcome the outcome of the vote and look forward to the adoption of the final Report in Plenary.
The Report calls on the Commission and the Member States to incentivise the use of natural and low-carbon building materials and reminds that sustainable building materials are “essential for achieving low-carbon and long-lasting building stock, and that construction opens an opportunity to store carbon into bio-based building products in the limits of sustainable availability”.
The building stock is the largest energy consumer in Europe with 40% of energy consumption and 36% of greenhouse gas emissions and its energy and resource efficient renovation is therefore of the utmost importance to achieve carbon neutrality. If Europe is to shift towards a sustainable and circular economy, sustainable materials such as wood-based products will indeed have to play a key role in achieving low-carbon and long-lasting building stock in Europe.
The use of wood-based products and solutions for the renovation of the built environment holds indeed critical potential to store carbon throughout the whole life cycle and substitute carbon and energy intensive materials. Therefore, the Renovation Wave Initiative while enhancing energy efficiency and combatting energy poverty should also foster the use of sustainable and climate friendly products and solutions. The construction sector ought to embrace the principles of resource efficiency, circular economy and the waste hierarchy in order to ensure the transition towards a resilient and sustainable economy.
Together EPF, FEP and EOS represents 53% of the woodworking sector in Europe and thus are an important part of the circular bioeconomy. We strongly believe that wood-based products and solutions ought to play a vital role to meet the objectives set in the European Green Deal.