April 14. 2024. 5:46

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Green homes directive would have ‘devastating effects in Italy’


The European Commission’s proposal on the energy efficiency of buildings in exchange for more funds to support renovations would have devastating effects in Italy, said the President of Confedelizia Giorgio Spaziani Testa who called on politicians to defend the savings of Italian families.

The European Parliament has upwardly modified the European Commission’s proposals on the energy efficiency of buildings in exchange for more funds to support renovations, but, in Italy, a chorus of opposing voices has risen, calling for a rethink of the directive.

“The text (…) would cause devastating effects in Italy,” Testa, who calls on politicians to work “to defend the savings of millions of Italian families, the beauty of our building heritage and the freedom of European countries to identify their own needs and establish their own priorities.”

The amendments to the directive were proposed by the Populars (EPP/Forza Italia), Socialists (S&D/PD), Liberals (Renew/IV/Action), Greens, and Left and will be voted on 9 February for the first time. Identity and Democracy (ID), of which the League is a member, and the Conservatives (ECR) led by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni (FDI), remain opposed.

The League has already promised to “fight”. According to Lega’s MEP Isabella Tovaglieri, the timeline planned in the agreement makes the energy requalification of buildings “unfeasible” and denounced “the ideological drift of the EP.”

Tovaglieri emphasised that the goal of energy efficiency in buildings is shared but that a “more secular position” is expected from the EU, which should provide for European resources and adequate timeframes.

“If the necessary resources are not there, we risk creating a boomerang, especially with regard to our country (…) We expect the other (Italian) parties to follow the course we have set”, she added.

In Italy, both Confedelizia and the National Association of Building Contractors (Ance) are protesting against the directive’s current state.

“In the period 2017-2019, we renovated an average of 2,900 buildings per year. Therefore, 630 years are needed to reach the first step of the EU directive and 3,800 years to reach the complete decarbonisation of buildings,” said Ance representatives at a hearing in the Chamber of Deputies.

“We have the technical capacity to carry out these interventions, we have demonstrated in the last two years (thanks to national funding) that we can sustain this pace, but we must have the policy and the tools, the European and national funding that allow us to keep this pace and reach the goal,” they explained.

(Federica Pascale | EURACTIV.it)