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"Energy Performance Indicator Tracking Schemes for the Continuous Optimisation of Refurbishment Processes in European Housing Stocks" (EPISCOPE)

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The goal of the EPISCOPE project was to make energy renovation in the European housing sector more transparent and effective. The project implemented pilot actions on different scales and aligned and compared them in a qualitative way. The conceptual framework was based on national residential building typologies developed during the IEE project TABULA. These classification schemes for national building stocks were extended to a 6 further countries. An upgrade of the TABULA WebTool reflected examples for refurbishment measures as well as national requirements for new buildings and interpretations for Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB). The main project activity was to track the energy saving progress of certain housing stock entireties on local, regional or national level. The implementation rate of different refurbishment measures was determined and compared with those activities which were necessary to attain the relevant climate protection targets.


1. Extension of project TABULA's national residential building typologies to further countries, including a classification scheme, example buildings and building stock statistics. An upgraded WebTool to reflect national example buildings (refurbishment and new built incl. national nZEB interpretations).2. Pilot actions identifying and quantifying refurbishment progress, rates of refurbishment, compliance with renovation requirements, uptake of recommendations, conditions for insulation measures, conditions for installation of renewable energy supply, and consumption benchmarks with energy performance indicators.3. Scenario calculations for housing stocks identifying refurbishment rates and achieved savings as well as building/systems combinations and renovation rates necessary to attain defined targets. Identification of necessary corrective actions – involvement of key actors and stakeholders in the discussion of adequate measures.4. A set of energy performance indicators reflecting the energy refurbishment state of housing stock subgroups on different scales, enabling comparison between different countries.5. Recommendations for regular monitoring by introducing the necessary energy performance indicators in energy certificate databases, representative surveys, census, heating or energy bills, strategic asset development, energy management etc.

Lessons learned

 1. Although in most partner countries national plans to increase the number of nZEBs have been drawn up, only some have assumed officially approaches and NZEB definitions so far. In some countries, illustrations for possible nZEB implementations are rare – the examples developed by the project therefore aim to provide valuable input to national discussions.2. With regards to building refurbishments, deviations between calculated energy demands and actual consumption are a matter of discussion in many of the participating countries. Although it was not possible to explore this issue in detail, the WebTool calculations and the building stock modelling addressed this by attempting more realistic estimates of savings.3. Reliable data has to be collected and updated regularly in order to carry out analysis of a building stock's energy performance. The work on the pilot actions showed that reliable databases especially concerning the scale of refurbishment conducted to date and current refurbishment rates are missing in many cases. As a result, accurate monitoring with regards to this information is not possible and the building stock models for scenario analysis can in these cases only be based on assumptions. The EPISCOPE project aimed to highlight the necessity of tracking the required information and suggested ways of doing it.

Partners and coordinator

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Institut Wohnen und Umwelt GmbH
Contact point: 
Britta Stein


In brief

01/04/2013 to 31/03/2016
Contract number: 

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