Page 24 - European Energy Innovation - Winter 2016 publication
P. 24

24  Winter 2016 European Energy Innovation


Increasing the energy
performance of buildings –
The enabling role of Research &
Innovation in Advanced Materials

By Fabrice Stassin

Energy is a priority for Europe          for buildings require that costs           •	 Manufacturing of devices
            and President Juncker wants  keep decreasing. The cost of these             and components used in LCE
            an Energy Union delivering   technologies depending namely on               technologies is moving to
            secure, affordable and       the advanced materials (non-ferrous            growing markets leading to
sustainable energy.                      metals, steel, alloys, glass, ceramics,        new industrial champions and
                                         plastics, composites), innovation is           European dependency on imported
While it is expected by International    needed to increase performance,                technologies (1st wind turbine
Energy Agency (IEA) that power,          reduce cost and extend lifetime of             & photovoltaic cell suppliers are
industry and transport sectors           advanced materials used in building            Chinese)
contribute the most to CO2 reductions,   components.
buildings have a role to play through                                               •	 Europe is losing leadership in R&D
energy performance. Improving energy     Low carbon energy (LCE) technologies           investment and innovation eco-
performance of buildings in Europe is    (energy performance in buildings,              systems develop outside Europe
crucial since they account for 40% of    energy capture & storage,                      (China and Europe spend each $2.8
final energy demand and are key to       decarbonization) are developing fast           billion but spending in Europe fell
reaching EU energy efficiency target of  and represent an important opportunity         8% compared to 2014 (government
20% by 2020 and 27% by 2030.             for Europe-based industry of advanced          spending down 18%) while it rose
                                         materials. EMIRI (the Energy Materials         4% in China)
The adoption and deployment of           Industrial Research Initiative) estimates
energy performance technologies          our Europe-based industry today at         These trends strongly impact job
                                         30 billion euro yearly revenues, over      creation in Europe in LCE technologies.
                                         500.000 direct & indirect jobs and close   Losing ground, Europe becomes a LCE
                                         to 3 billion euro of yearly investment     technology importer, and represents
                                         in R&D and capital expenditures. Every     less than 15% of jobs in the sector
                                         additional billion euro of revenues        (1.17 million jobs in Europe according
                                         generates about 4.000 direct jobs.         to International Renewable Energy
                                                                                    Association (IRENA)) while China
                                         Global trends are however impacting        accounts for 44% of total.
                                         the Europe-based industry of advanced
                                         materials for LCE technologies:            EMIRI estimates though that up to 50%
                                                                                    of jobs preserved in Europe in LCE
                                         •	 Developing countries invest more        technologies are related to advanced
                                             than developed countries in the        materials. Our industry is strongly
                                             deployment of LCE technologies         anchored in Europe and serving global
                                             and appear as the key markets          markets but to maintain leadership,
                                             (China is global leader investing      develop manufacturing presence
                                             2.5 times more than Europe in          and innovation power in Europe, we
                                             renewable energy with an installed     recommend that EU and Member
                                             capacity at 26% of world total)        States:

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