BRUSSELS (March 6, 11:15 a.m. ET) – PlasticsEurope, a trade association that represents Europe's resin suppliers, has expressed concern that a European Parliament decision to reduce public building renovation rates will make it more difficult to achieve a goal of reducing energy use by 20 percent.
Earlier this year, the parliamentary committee on industry, research and energy (ITRE) decided to reduce the annual renovation rate of public buildings from 3 percent to 2.5 percent.
This could affect the continent's ambitions to reduce energy use 20 percent by 2020, according to Brussels-based PlasticsEurope.
“If accepted, this would reduce the number of renovated public buildings by approximately 100,000 per year,” said Martin Engelmann, advocacy director at PlasticsEurope, in a March 1 news release. “In the upcoming trialogue between the Commission, the European Parliament and the Council, PlasticsEurope will push for a higher renovation rate because this is key to reaching the EU's energy and climate protection targets.”
According to the association, buildings account for 40 percent of Europe's energy consumption.
“Thanks to thermal insulation, triple-glazed windows or cooling and heating systems, the plastics industry will have an important role to play in this regard,” it says. “Over its use in time, plastic insulation can save about 200 times the amount of energy consumed during its production. Replacing low performance window frames with high performance ones made of plastics would help save 40 billion kilowatt hours of energy per year, i.e. an amount of energy equivalent to the output of 5 large power stations.”