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See how sustainable buildings in general and Level(s) more specifically is referred to in the 2020 Circular Economy Action Plan and the Renovation Wave !

Level(s) - The European framework for sustainable buildings

“The European Green Deal will improve the health, quality of life and wellbeing of all Europeans, and we should all be involved in making it a reality.

Level(s) is an important tool to help architects, builders and public authorities play their role by improving the buildings we live and work in. Level(s) is designed to improve the sustainability of buildings throughout their lifecycle, helping professionals deliver better buildings – while also speeding Europe’s transition towards a more circular economic model.”

EU Commissioner for the Environment, Virginius Sinkevicius



Level(s) is a common European approach to assess and report on the sustainability of buildings.

Using existing standards, the voluntary Level(s) framework provides a common language for building sustainability, which other initiatives can also use.

Within the Level(s) framework, each indicator is designed to link the individual building’s impact with the priorities for sustainability at a European level. This focuses the Level(s) user on a manageable number of essential concepts and indicators at building level that contribute to achieving EU and Member State environmental policy goals.

Discover Level(s) for yourself, the indicators and how to work with them

Following the development and testing, all the technical manuals that you need about Level(s), as well as guidance about how to use the framework, is now available on the Joint Research Centre website.

Click on the link above and learn more about:

  • The introduction on how to work with Level(s)
  • How to set up a Level(s) project
  • How to use each indicator, step by step

A first brief introduction to what Level(s) is can be found in the Level(s) e-flyer EN | DE | ES | PL

Following the launch of Level(s), the European Commission will continue to work on developing more tools to support the use of Level(s) and further initiatives based on Level(s), and we welcome feedback on these from all our stakeholders.

For more details of how Level(s) is helping build better buildings, just click on the tabs at the top of this page.

You can also keep up to date with interesting developments by subscribing to our regular Level(s) newsletters.

Bringing buildings into the circular economy

Level(s) is a framework to help design and construct sustainable buildings with the whole lifecycle in mind. Sustainable buildings use less energy and materials, and are healthier and more comfortable spaces for occupants. Along with lower environmental impact throughout the whole lifecycle, sustainable buildings are relatively low cost to run and in the long term, more valuable properties. The buildings that we construct and renovate must be future-proof.

To move away from the linear economic model of ‘take, make, and waste’ and towards a resource efficiency-based circular model, Europe needs a sustainable built environment. And the buildings sector is one of the most resource consuming sectors in Europe – based on a building’s full lifecycle, the sector accounts for approximately half of all extracted materials, half of total energy consumption, one third of water consumption and one third of waste generation.

That is why the built environment is a key target in the European Commission’s policy for circular economy: a regenerative economic system in which resource and energy consumption are minimised. Level(s) is a framework which brings buildings into the circular economy. It encourages lifecycle thinking, and supports users all the way from design stage through to operation and occupation of a building.

Level(s) focuses attention on the most important aspects of a building’s performance, providing a simple entry point to what can be a very complex area.

Building professionals and their clients can use Level(s) to increase their understanding of how buildings impact upon the environment. Level(s) helps the user identify hotspots and shows how to reduce environmental impact.

Level(s) can also be used by assessment and certification schemes to make sure that their criteria reflect the most important priorities for circular economy at a European level, and to enable the comparability of data and results across different building performance rating systems. Last but certainly not least, Level(s) provides a common language for public authorities in charge of built environment policy and projects.

Level(s) has been developed with the following stakeholders in mind: developers, investors, architects, quantity surveyors, construction managers, lead contractors, facility managers, asset managers, and buildings occupants.

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