French News

Building & Renovation

Energy Performance Study for New Buildings

Thursday 05 December 2013

Planning application procedures have been tightened, with a requirement for an energy study of proposed new buildings with a surface area of over 50m².

A décret of 30 October 2013 extends the obligation to study the various energy supply solutions for new buildings as part of the planning application process.

Until now the requirement concerned only new buildings over 1000 m².

In order to comply with a European Directive of 2010 on the energy performance of buildings the government has lowered to 50 m² surface floor area the threshold for which a technical study of energy supply solutions for new buildings must be undertaken.

Exempted from the requirement are extensions to existing buildings.

Applicable to all new planning application submitted after 1 January 2014, the measure is intended to "promote the installation of efficient equipment and renewable energy," says the information published with the décret.

The study is called l’étude de faisabilité d’approvisionnement en énergie.

It consists of a cost/benefit analysis of various alternatives for heating, ventilation, production of hot water and lighting to the building.

The use of solar energy and other renewable energy, connection to a district heating system, and the use of heat pumps are envisaged in order to orient the owner to a consideration of a range of renewal energy options.

The client is required to compare different approaches, using at least four variants, as follows:

  • Solar thermal systems;
  • Solar photovoltaic systems;
  • Heating systems with wood or biomass;
  • Wind systems;
  • Connection to a district system;
  • Geothermal heat pumps;
  • Other types of heat pumps;
  • Condensing boilers;
  • Combined systems of heat and electricity

The feasibility study should be conducted prior to the submission of a planning application, when the new floor surface is equal to or greater than 50m².

The costs of such a study will be at least several hundred euros, and more for larger properties.

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