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In 2021 all new buildings have to be plus energy buildings. © CIPRA International

EnEV is part of the german economic management law. It consists of the former regulation on heating systems and of the regulation on heat insulation. On the juridical basis of of the energy saving act constructional requirements for energy efficient buildings are standardized. It is applied for residential, office and certain company buildings. There are exceptions within monument protection and partial demolition.

I Description of the measure

Title in original language: Energieeinsparverordnung (EnEV)

Location of CNA: Germany

Municipality / regional entity: German Federal Republic

Category of the experience: Standard & label
Type(s) of CNA:

Principal nomination: Legal
Secondary nomination(s): Financial

Thematic field(s):

Principal field: Buildings & construction
Secondary field(s): Energy

Spatial scale: National
Time & duration:

Start date: 01.02.2002
Duration: still ongoing (with adjustments)

Key word(s): buildings and construction, energy saving, legislation


EnEV regulates integrated energy-efficient requirements for heated or cooled buildings, regarding both the building envelope (cladding) and the installation engineering. It also contains regulations for implementation and obligations to retrofit the existing building stock, as e.g. the replacement of electric thermal storage heaters. Regarding new buildings the main requirement factor is the primary energy need per year in comparison to a building of the same geometry and size and predefined technical attributes. One component of the EnEV is the energy pass for buildings. It is an instrument to show the energy situation of a building. It is obligatory in case of building, restoring or extending a building. If a building is to sell or to let an energy pass is obligatory, too. The EnEV is an element of the "Integrated Energy and Climate Concept" of the government. A funding is possible by the CO2-building-restructuring programme.


In a first step (EnEV 2009) the aim was to reduce the energy-, heating- and warm water demand by 30 %, in the EnEV 2012 the energy requirements are additionally raised by about 30 %. It refers to the allowed annual need of primary energy and to the requirements on the thermal insulation of the cladding (exterior walls, windows, roofs, basement ceilings). A part of the needed warmth and cold must be produced by renewable energy sources. An alternative is that the energy efficiency of a building is increased by approved compensating measures. Within the reconstruction of old buildings requirements are to be fulfilled mainly in the case of changing the buildings in form of modernisation, rebuilding or extension measures. The implementation of the EnEV is stricter controlled (EnEV 2009). E.g. consistent fines are imposed and an increasing obligation to produce private proof.


With the EnEV and its adjustments important tools were created to improve the construction of energy efficient buildings and to restore existing buildings in an energy efficent way. For these measures house owners have the possibility to get a funding by the KfW (reconstruction loan corporation). The EnEV is an important instrument in reaching the aims of the German energy turnaround, big issues are to lowen the energy demand, to raise the renewable energies and to improve the energy efficiency.

II Assessment criteria

Mitigation effects: Very high

The EnEV leads to energy savings, to reduced CO2 emissions, to a higher energy efficiency and to an expansion of the renewable energies.

Impacts on adaptation: Positive

Impacts can exist by the expansion of renewable energies. This has to happen in a sustainable way.

Impacts on environment:

- Landscape: Neutral
- Alpine ecosystems / biodiversity: Neutral
- Water / soil / air: Positive
- "Other": None

The impacts are depending on which renewable energies are used and how they will be implemented.

Impacts on society:

- Social justice: Positive
- Regional / cultural identity: Positive
- "Other": None

By making houses more energy efficient the costs for energy are reduced in a longer perspective. If e.g. a region is well-known for its energy activities a positive influence on the regional identity can result from it.

Impacts on economy:

- Employment / job creation: Very positive
- Added value / income: Very positive
- Know how / competitiveness: Very positive
- "Other": None

By restoring and building houses new jobs are created and special know-how is needed. The added value is influenced in a positive way.

Public relations impact and awareness-raising: High

Due to the political activities a lot of PR-Work is done.

Transferability: High

The EnEV as well as the energy pass for buildings can serve as example for other countries.

Cross sectoral and integrative approach: Very high

It is a combination of political decisions, technical know-how and change in behaviour.

Good governance: High

Since the German Renewable Energy Act consists on political and legislative decisions a high participatory approach is existing.

III Executive body and contact information

Executive body: Administration

Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development and Ministry of Economics and Technology are together working on the advancement of the EnEV.

Contact person(s):

Institution: Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development
Address: Invalidenstraße 44, 10115 Berlin
Phone: + 49 (0)30 18 - 300 - 0
Fax: + 49 (0)30 18 - 300 - 1942

Other contact persons:

Other contact person: Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, Scharnhorststr. 34-37 10115 Berlin, phone: +49 (0) 30-18 615-9 , Fax: +49 (0) 30-18 615-7010,

Online information:

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