Digitalisation of Energy Renovation to boost Youth Employment

JOINT PRESS RELEASE

Brussels, 29th March 2018

With an ageing workforce in the construction sector, and persistent youth unemployment across the EU, the digitalisation of the energy renovation sector is the ideal tool to address both issues, by creating a more attractive sector for the younger generation”, explained Adrian Joyce, Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign, speaking at a joint Renovate Europe – Youth Intergroup event on Wednesday 28th March in the European Parliament.

Indeed, as collaborative robots, drones, prefabricated materials (often involving 3D printing) and other automotive processes sweep through the energy renovation sector, the construction industry is rapidly shedding its traditional image of muscular manual workers battling tough weather outdoors, in favour of a digitalised, innovative and safer working environment.

Digital solutions have the great potential to reach women and young people, nowadays underrepresented in the sector, by alleviating burdensome physical tasks and creating new high qualified jobs”, explains Eugenio Quintieri from the European Builders Confederation (EBC). “In order to exploit this potential, digitalisation needs to become massive. This will only be possible by developing digital solutions that are affordable, easy to access and that constitute a real added value to construction SMEs and craftsmen, that represent the vast majority of the sector”

The multiple benefits that will flow from such a transformation are undeniable, but there is a need to support this transformation to ensure that it is inclusive and entails enhanced collaboration across the value chain, highlighted Domenico Campogrande from the European Construction Industry Federation (FIEC).

MEP Brando Benifei, Vice-Chair of the Youth Intergroup and host of the joint event, was clear about the crucial role that the post-2020 MFF has to play to upskill our youth and support our SMEs so they can rise to the challenge and stand at the frontline of the digitalisation curve. He emphasised that The European Parliament will be united in pushing for more support for SMEs and investing in the workforce. We've been pushing for structural funds, especially the European Social Fund to be used more specifically for digital literacy and [retraining for] new jobs”.

The European Commission’s DG Employment agreed that there is a huge potential in the post-2020 EU Budget to support the digitalisation of energy renovation in order to boost youth employment.

Fulvia Raffaelli from DG GROW reminded the audience that digitalisation is not an end in itself but has to be understood as a tool to reach a clear objective, in this case a highly energy efficient building stock which will boost employment, prosperity and wellbeing among EU citizens and businesses. She emphasised that “Construction has to be perceived as a process and renovation must be fully part of it”.

Renovate Italy, one of the national partners of the Campaign, was also present at the event, speaking about the direct market experience of one of its supporting companies, ‘Teicos’. It is an SME specialised in energy renovation, which is implementing an innovative business model based on digital management techniques for the construction process. It is proving to be highly attractive for young people and has helped the company to grow at a significantly faster rate than its more traditional competitors.

END

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@youthintergroup  @RenovateEurope

Relevant documents:

Download the Poster and Agenda of the event

Download the one-page infographic on the topic: How can the Digitalisation of the EU Energy Renovation Sector boost Youth Employment?

Download the 6-page briefing on the topic: Digitalisation, Disruption and the Energy Renovation Sector

Download the PPT presentations: Joint event with the Youth Intergroup - 28th March

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About Renovate Europe

Renovate Europe is a political communications campaign with the ambition to reduce the energy demand of the building stock in the EU by 80% by 2050 compared to 2005 levels through legislation and ambitious renovation programmes. This will bring the energy performance of the entire building stock in the EU to a Nearly Zero Energy (NZEB) performance level. Renovate Europe brings together 36 partners from across the building value chain (trade associations, companies, trade unions, city networks and 14 national partners). Learn more: www.renovate-europe.eu @RenovateEurope

About the YOUTH Intergroup:

The YOUTH Intergroup is a cross-party grouping of over 120 Members of the European Parliament working together for better youth policies in Europe.


Joint Event with the YOUTH Intergroup - 28TH March

Youth Employment and the Digitalisation of the Energy Renovation Sector

 

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PPT presentations from the event are available to download in the Agenda below 

11:00    Welcoming Remarks by YOUTH Intergroup

MEP Brando Benifei, Vice-Chair of the Youth Intergroup

 

11:05    Introductory Remarks by Renovate Europe – How many jobs? Boosting youth employment

Adrian Joyce, Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign

 

Session I: Transformation of the Energy Renovation Sector – More digital, more youth?

 Moderator: Adrian Joyce, Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign

 

11:10    The Construction Sector – Adapting to the Digital Times

Fulvia Raffaelli, DG GROW, Digital Construction, European Commission

 

11:20    Youth Involvement – Why the Energy Renovation Sector is becoming increasingly attractive

Domenico Campogrande, European Construction Industry Federation (FIEC)

 

11:30    HEART PROJECT: Ensuring High Energy Efficiency Standards are maintained in the Digitalisation Process

(Creating a retrofit toolkit with cloud based computing platform to transform existing building into highly energy efficient smart building)

Julien Dijol, Housing Europe as part of HEART PROJECT

 

11:40    Q&A

 

Session II: Digitalisation of the Energy Renovation Sector – Training Youth for the SMEs of Tomorrow

Moderator: Adrian Joyce, Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign

 

11:45 Putting SMEs and Youth at the Frontline of the Digitalisation Curve

Eugenio Quintieri, European Builders Confederation (EBC)

 

11:55    The Impact of Digitalization in Energy Renovation SMEs – Boosting Youth Employment in Italy

Cecilia Hugony, Renovate Italy

 

12:05    An Opportunity for Youth Training on Digitalisation and Energy Renovation in the MFF: European Social Fund

Maëva Roulette, DG EMPL, European Commission

 

12:15    Q&A

 

12:20    Closing Remarks

MEP Brando Benifei, Vice-Chair of the Youth Intergroup

Adrian Joyce, Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign

 

End of event


28th March: Event on Youth Employment and the Digitalisation of the Energy Renovation Sector

28th March 2018: Event on Youth Employment and the Digitalisation of the Energy Renovation Sector

Event jointly organised by the Youth Intergroup and Renovate Europe. 

Hosted by MEP Brando Benifei (Italy, S&D)

Room A5G305, European Parliament, Brussels

Logo Youth Intergroup Cropped   cropped-renovate-logo.jpg

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Digitalisation is sweeping through the energy renovation sector, from collaborative robots and virtual reality modelling (BIM) to indoor prefabrication, drones & 3D printing.

-   How can we address the widening gap between rising youth unemployment and an ageing construction sector  through an increasingly attractive digitalised energy renovation sector?

-   Which opportunities in the MFF can support SMEs and equip the next youth generation with the technical skills to  face this challenge?

-   What is the potential to improve working conditions, increase productivity, reduce construction costs and improve the energy efficiency of buildings?

 

Download the Poster and Agenda of the event

Download the one-page infographic on the topic: How can the Digitalisation of the EU Energy Renovation Sector boost Youth Employment?

Download the 6-page briefing on the topic: Digitalisation, Disruption and the Energy Renovation Sector


'Efficiency First' will deliver - let's start with renovating our buildings

16 March 2018 by Adrian Joyce, Renovate Europe Campaign Director

There is a simple truth about EU climate policy: If it does not put energy efficiency first, it will not meet its objectives cost-effectively. And if it does not try to do that, it may not meet them at all.

Rather than prioritising new energy supply, EU Member States must understand ‘Energy Efficiency First’ to be more than a slogan and should accordingly first evaluate the opportunity for reducing the energy demand – and here reducing the energy demand in our existing building stock would be an obvious place to start and to redirect national investments.

Read the full oped on Euractiv


‘Efficiency First’ will deliver – let’s start with renovating our buildings

euractiv image

There is a simple truth about EU climate policy: If it does not put energy efficiency first, it will not meet its objectives cost-effectively. And if it does not try to do that, it may not meet them at all, writes Adrian Joyce.

Energy consumption is rising again in Europe after a long period of decline. Eurostat figures released last month show a spike in 2015 that continued through 2016.

We are now four percentage points south of the EU’s 2020 target of cutting our primary energy use by a fifth, and heading in the wrong direction. At the same time, our greenhouse gas emissions registered their first increase since 2010 in 2015 – by a small, but still significant 0.6%.

The official 2016 figures are not out yet, and it would be wrong to race to judgement. But with Europe’s economy picking up again last year – traditionally the harbinger of an emissions spike – complacency about the EU’s climate performance now could be a fatal mistake.

Experts from the Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP) explain that “Energy Efficiency First is a powerful approach to energy policy that can save families and businesses billions of euros in energy costs annually, improve energy security, and accelerate progress toward Europe’s goals for carbon reduction and a clean energy economy”. Energy Efficiency first is purely common sense and we even have the solutions today.

Rather than prioritising new energy supply, EU Member States must understand ‘Energy Efficiency First’ to be more than a slogan and should accordingly first evaluate the opportunity for reducing the energy demand – and here reducing the energy demand in our existing building stock would be an obvious place to start and to redirect national investments.

The Commission’s High-Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance recently reported that “Nearly three-quarters of the EU’s 2030 clean energy investment gap is accounted for by energy efficiency in buildings. This gap, which stands around €130 billion per year, is also geographically concentrated in Central and East European Member States.”

Europe is committed to a rapid and systemic clean energy transformation, based on the recommendations of the planet’s best climate scientists. To that end, the European Commission saysin its 2016 Clean Energy For All Europeans: “Putting energy efficiency first reflects the fact that the cheapest and cleanest source of energy is the energy that does not need to be produced or used.” This is also the case in buildings!

The case for the job-creatingpollution-curbinghealth-enhancingmoney-saving solution to climate change that energy efficiency represents, should not need restating. But let us recap for, as the EU’s Energy and Climate Commissioner, Miguel Arias Cañete, said at Renovate Europe Day 2017 in October, “Europe will not achieve our [climate] objectives without renovating our building stock.”

The hard-won recognition that efficiency is a source of energy in its own right is not just a pillar of the EU’s Energy Union, it is a guiding principle of the International Energy Agency too.   Indeed, the IEA found that by cutting energy waste, developing countries could achieve universal energy cover, while using 50-80% less energy.

Think of all the money this could save for ending hunger, preventing disease, educating the illiterate and preparing for the onset of the climate change that is already unavoidable.

The multiple benefits of energy efficiency in buildings also exist in our own countries – from curbing energy poverty to cleaner and safer streets – and improved energy security.  An ambitious cost-effective renovation strategy in south-eastern Europe could cut overall gas consumption by 70% in just two decades, according to one study by the Buildings Performance Institute Europe.

This is the untapped potential that energy efficiency holds – and it is most densely concentrated in heat-leaking, poorly insulated homes that cost EU states in health budgets as well as energy bills.

Across Europe, millions of households and businesses have already benefitted enormously from energy renovation, while reducing their carbon emissions.

When it comes to delivering more, now is the time to raise our game. It is not the time to take our eyes off the ball or – worse – to start lobbying for a different and dirtier game altogether.

 

Read Full Opinon on Euractivhttps://www.euractiv.com/section/energy/opinion/efficiency-first-will-deliver-lets-start-with-renovating-our-buildings/