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STEP-by-STEP renovation towards nearly zero energy SPORT buildings (STEP-2-SPORT)

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STEP-2-SPORT project supported the refurbishment of existing sport buildings through step by step renovation towards Nearly Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB). Energy audits and energy performance certification were performed in pilot sport facilities from 7 different countries (Sweden, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece and Bulgaria). Action Plans for renovation of pilots were developed, identifying what energy improvement measures each pilot building should implement over the next 10 years in order to be a NZEB. Following the recommendations defined in the action plans, energy improvement measures were set up during the project. A roadmap was defined with the aim of achieving NZEB in EU sport buildings in the medium to long term. The most important barrier for sport owners identified is the lack of investment capital to implement full refurbishment towards NZEB. For this reason, innovative business model schemes, and in particular ESCOs were promoted since they could finance energy improvement measures. A Replication Plan has been defined to transfer the results of the project and trigger the replication of renovations in other EU sport buildings._______More information: Twitter: @step2sport / Facebook / LinkedIn 


  • Result 1: Energy action plans were defined in 26 pilot sport buildings in order to become Nearly Zero Energy Buildings within 10 years.
  • Result 2: 26 pilot sport facilities started implementing energy efficiency and renewable energy measures, contributing to step by step renovation towards NZEB.
  • Result 3: Tools to support replication of step by step renovations towards NZEB in EU sport buildings were created, such as a Roadmap towards Nearly Zero Energy Sport Buildings, a benchmarking tool to provide recommendations for implementing energy improvement measures towards nZEB as well as an online advisory platform.
  • Result 4: 7 technical training sessions aimed to promote step by step renovation towards nZEB in sport buildings: technical training to owners of sport buildings, the construction sector, architects, ESCOs and technical staff for maintenance of sport buildings; and transference of knowledge to users throughout guided visits.
  • Result 5: Recommendations were made for a common EU certification scheme of sport buildings, supporting in that way the objectives of the EPBD under article 11.9, which requires the European Commission to adopt a voluntary common European Union certification scheme for the energy performance of non-residential buildings.

Lessons learned

  • Lesson 1:  The high energy consumption of sport buildings presents a great opportunity for energy conservation, providing significant potentials to reduce CO2 emissions. A wide variety of energy conservation measures can be implemented in existing sport buildings to reduce significantly their energy consumption. In total, more than 11.000 MWh per year can be saved in the 26 pilot sport buildings evaluated through the implementation of energy efficiency measures and renewable energies.
  • Lesson 2:  Most of the EU countries have not set up specific NZEB definitions for sport buildings. Typically, the maximum primary energy demand allowed is the same for various different non-residential building types (sport buildings, offices, hospitals, schools, hotels, etc). A threshold for the minimum share of renewable energy is often not defined. Member states should ensure that their national definition of NZEB takes into account the heavy use of non-regulated energy in sport buildings.
  • Lesson 3: Four key steps should be followed to ensure a successful transformation towards NZEB sports buildings:
    • 1) determine the baseline energy performance as well as potential energy improvement opportunities
    • 2) Identify possible resources to finance NZEB renovation
    • 3) Develop an Action Plan towards NZEB renovation & implementation of energy conservation measures (energy efficiency measures & renewable energies) and
    • 4) Measurement and Verification of the energy savings achieved. 

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LEITAT Technological Center


In brief

01/03/2014 to 28/02/2017
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