A large number of office buildings in the Netherlands may be at risk of closure because they do not meet the requirement of energy label C. From 2023, all office buildings must have at least energy label C. If companies do not comply with this, a fine or in the worst case, closure of the company will follow. The obligation also ensures that existing buildings will perform better in terms of energy. In addition, an energy label C increases the working climate and comfort for users.
In short, work to be done. As sustainability entrepreneurs, making the office building more sustainable is part of our strategy. Do you know whether your office has an energy label of C or higher?!
What is the obligation energy label C Offices?
An energy label indicates how energy-efficient a building is and which energy-saving measures are still possible. The classes of energy labels are determined on the basis of primary fossil energy consumption (kWh/m2/yr). The less fossil energy the home uses, the better the energy label. G is the worst energy label and A++++ the best.
The obligation applies to office buildings where the usable surface area of office functions accounts for 50% or more of the total surface area and the surface area of office functions exceeds 100m2. This means a primary fossil energy consumption of 224 kWh per m2 per year or less.
All measures that lead to at least energy label C must be taken by 1 January 2023 at the latest. The energy label must also be registered. The obligation is included in the Building Decree, a collection of technical and other regulations that apply to the construction of a structure. In 2019, targets were formulated for the built environment in the Climate Agreement. The aim is to achieve an energy-neutral built environment by 2050. This obligation is a step towards these objectives, with 2030 as an intermediate target.
More information about the obligation, such as what counts as an office building and which buildings are excluded, can be found on the page ‘frequently asked questions Energy label C offices of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency’.
What's holding back office owners?
Many office buildings do not yet have an energy label C. For example, Het Parool reported that a third of Amsterdam offices are not yet 2023-proof. Especially in medium-sized cities, sustainability has not yet started, such as Hengelo with only 29%. What’s holding back office owners?
Large multinationals attach more value to renting sustainable office space because of their image. Civil society organizations and government agencies also impose requirements on the office they rent. SMEs are lagging behind in this development. This is because entrepreneurs prefer to rent a cheap office instead of paying a little more for a more sustainable building. According to Colliers, tenants themselves can increase the pressure to encourage investors to make their office buildings more sustainable. Also because it safeguards the value of real estate in the long term. Comments can be placed on the tactics of institutional parties that sell their non-sustainable properties in order to make their own portfolio more sustainable.
Colliers’ research shows that the majority of investors say they consider the sustainability of their real estate important, but that they mainly do this during regular maintenance. It therefore appears that the process of making office buildings more sustainable is slowing down as a result. In addition, applying for an energy label is mandatory when selling or renting out a non-residential building. Offices that do not yet have an energy label are probably occupied by the same company. The question is, of course, whether all buildings will receive energy label C on time with this approach.
How can I meet the obligation energy label C Offices?
Raising the energy label requires a reduction in primary fossil energy consumption. The first step is to insulate the building where possible. This is followed by sustainable heat with a solar boiler or heat pump. In this way, the building can also be cut off from the gas. But sometimes it only takes a few measures, such as installing LED lighting. Many offices built after 1989 already meet Label C requirements, but have yet to apply for it.
Need help making your office more sustainable to energy label C?
Hedgehog Company helps entrepreneurs to become more sustainable. Meeting the obligation offers the perfect opportunity to make your company fully sustainable!