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4. March 2013

"POWER HOUSE nZEC! debate on Decentralised Energy Production Ownership and Consumption" - 04 March 2013, Brussels, Belgium

The visit to the exhibition on the the World’s first zero-Emission Polar Research Station at Tour & Taxis represented an excellent prelude to the discussion that followed with EU policy makers on obstacles, risks and benefits of decentralised energy production and consumption and ownership which must be overcome if we are to meet nearly Zero Energy Building Targets set by the EU.

Princess Elisabeth Antarctica is an example of how we can deal with climate change and the actions we can take at a personal and community level to respond to this challenge. The polar station shows the great potential of buildings in production, management and storage of energy in a sustainable, autonomous and efficient way, even in very severe climates.

In European homes, there is no need for such super high-tech solutions and large investments to release this potential, which can positively affect greenhouse gas emission and can also help families to reduce significantly energy bills, however, this is it not yet happening due to some obstacles…there is an urgent need to address the technical, financial and legislative barriers which are proving detrimental to progress!

Influential stakeholders brought light to these obstacles and talked about next steps needed at EU and National levels; they included:

  • Christos Doulkeridis, Brussels Minister for Housing;
  • Judith A. Merkies, MEP, S&D Group, Member of the ITRE Committee, Shadow Rapporteur for the European Parliament’s report on Making the Internal Market work;
  • Kurt Eliasson, President of CECODHAS Housing Europe;
  • Oliver Rapf, Director, Building Performance Institute;
  • Piet De Vey Mestdagh, Member of the ENVE Commission of the CoR and Member of the Executive Council of the Province of Groningen, Rapporteur for the Committee of the Regions on the report ‘ Making the Internal Market Work’ (tbc);
  • Dirk Van Evercooren,  Director Markets, Flemish Regulator for Electricity and Gas Markets;
  • Directors of Dutch and German Housing Federations;
  • Thierry Touchais, Executive Director, International Polar Foundation.

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