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BIM-SPEED is a research project funded by Horizon 2020. It is being co-ordinated by the Technical University of Berlin. FIEC is a partner. The purpose of the project is to stimulate the use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) in the energy renovation of residential buildings.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC believes that BIM - already an important tool in the construction of new buildings and infrastructure - could have a significant impact on the speed and effectiveness of energy renovation. However, as it is more difficult to introduce BIM into works on the existing building stock, because of the need to set up the model when a building already exists, then new tools need to be developed. Given our commitment to accelerating the speed of energy renovation in the EU, this project will show how BIM can be introduced into this important task, offering SMEs in particular, ways to start using it.


Actions and key dates

01/11/2018 – BIM-SPEED start date
29/11/2018 – BIM-SPEED kick off meeting
06/05/2019 – BIM-SPEED partner meeting
28/11/2019 – BIM-SPEED partner meeting
12/03/2020 – Draft guidelines for rules for the BIM-SPEED competition

The new Circular Economy Action Plan was published on 11 March 2020. It builds on the previous Action Plan published in 2016. The measures for construction are outlined:
- Strategy for a Sustainable Built Environment by 2021
- Recycled content requirements in revised Construction Products Regulation
- Promoting Circular Economy Principles for Buildings Design and Digital Logbook
- Level(s) voluntary assessment framework for environmental performance of buildings to "integrate life cycle assessment in public procurement"
- Revision of material recovery targets
- Rehabilitation of brownfield sites and dealing with excavated soils
- No specific information on the Renovation Wave

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC is committed to the Circular Economy, the achievement of which can be accelerated by the efforts of our industry. Although the above measures are outlined in the new plan, we need to follow the progress of this document through the EU institutions and in particular to comment on any specific targets that are proposed for construction. In spite of support, including a number of voluntary initiatives developed by the European Commission with industry stakeholders, many obstacles remain, such as the lack of adequate recycling facilities located near construction sites.

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Actions and key dates

11/12/2019 – European Green Deal published
11/03/2020 – Circular Economy Action Plan published
12/03/2020 – FIEC summary of main issues made available for members

The Construction Products Regulation (CPR) 305/2011 regulates the placing on the EU market of construction products. Amongst other things, CE Marking is applied to products in the framework of harmonised standards and a Declaration of Performance is required to accompany the product.

A revision of the CPR was already envisaged by the European Commission and this intention has been repeated in the recently published European Green Deal with some more detail in the new Circular Economy Action Plan (see separate fact sheet).

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
The CE Mark in the context of the CPR is widely misunderstood and contractors need more information than is provided in the accompanying Declaration of Performance. Over the years, FIEC has been lobbying for improvements to protect contractors from the legal uncertainty that exists and there have been discussions regarding a possible revision of the CPR. The form that this might take has been the subject of many meetings and several studies have been undertaken. Another one has been announced for 2020. Latest information indicates that the timescale for revision is too long to solve the problems that contractors are experiencing with the existing CPR and therefore, FIEC is working with other relevant federations on a proposal for interim technical solutions.

Actions and key dates

28/06/2019 – FIEC-EBC-SBS-CPE Joint Declaration on Standardisation
October 2019 – Survey among Member States and CPR Review Technical Platform Members
Ongoing – Bi-annual meetings of Standing Committee on Construction
December 2019 – Commission "non-paper"- containing unofficial proposals for way forward
April 2020 – joint technical proposal for interim solutions from FIEC, European Builders Confederation, Small Business Standards and Construction Products Europe.

Decarbonisation of the construction industry is a feature of the new programme for the European Commission, for the political term which started in December 2019. In the priorities listed by the European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, not all of them materialised as subsequent policy proposals having an impact on construction. Nevertheless, decarbonisation of buildings was considered important in the last EU term and it has now taken centre stage because there is a real risk that the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement targets will not be met. This agreement set out the 20/20/20 goals, namely the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by 20%, the increase of renewable energy's market share to 20% and a 20% increase in energy efficiency — all by 2030. The purpose of these goals is to limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees celsius.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
The scope of the ETS will be reviewed and certain phases of the life cycle may be targeted. Historically, decarbonisation of buildings has been tackled by energy efficiency measures, which, by reducing the consumption of energy also reduce emissions. The Renovation Wave, more details of which are expected imminently, will cover this aspect. In the meantime, FIEC considers that the recently published Climate Law is more aimed at Member States and does not require a specific position from us.

Actions and key dates

July 2019 – "A Union that strives for more: Political Guidelines for the Next European Commission 2019-2024"
29/11/2019 – FIEC conference on the proposed European Green Deal
04/03/2020 – Proposal for a European Climate Law COM(2020) 80 final

The European Commission has prepared some guidelines, in close co-operation with industry stakeholders entitled Circular Economy Principles for Buildings Design. The work falls under the Construction 2020 initiative, Thematic Group 3 "Sustainable use of natural resources". The guidelines deal with the concept whereby buildings are designed with the end of life already in mind. The aim is to maximise the opportunities for re-use and recycling of materials from disassembled buildings, by firstly choosing non-toxic and re-useable materials as far as possible and then installing them in ways that facilitate easy disassembly, such as avoiding the use of glues etc.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC supports the Circular Economy in construction. One of the obstacles to recycling and re-use is that materials are often toxic, or do not meet current safety standards, which have susperseded those that were in place at the time of construction. Another obstacle is that materials have been installed in ways that make it impossible to recover them at disassembly or demolition stage. The Circular Economy Principles for Buildings Design help to explain how buildings can be better designed and constructed for maximum recycling and re-use opportunities. The document also cons ders how the potential for an eventual change of use of a building can be accounted for at the design stage. FIEC has long supported this work and was involved in the small stakeholder group dedicated to the development of the principles.

Actions and key dates

March 2020 – Principles of Design for Deconstruction published.

DigiPLACE is an EU funded project with a budget of €1M, which started on 1 September 2019. It will run for 18 months. The project has 19 partners, 13 of which directly represent the construction industry. There are also three Member States involved. The aim is to create a road map for a digital industrial platform for construction in Europe. This platform will be an operating system that integrates different technologies and various relevant applications and services used in Building Information Modelling (BIM) and also in other digital processes used increasingly in construction. The long term purpose is to facilitate the uptake of digitalisation in construction in the EU, by identifying and tackling the obstacles, such as the lack of compatibility of applications and lack of open access to data and interoperability of existing systems. Should the project be successful, it could be followed by a second much larger one, which would - amongst other things - actually create the platform.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC was one of the original organisations that called for support for the construction industry, after the Digitising European Industry initiative supported other sectors, with considerable funding to facilitate the digital transformation of those sectors. Contractors are at the heart of the construction value chain and this platform needs to meet the requirements of construction companies. Therefore, FIEC is a partner in the project. Its specific role is to co-ordinate the Advisory Board. With the involvement of this Advisory Board and a larger network of more than 1000 stakeholders, the project will define a "Reference Architecture Framework" for the platform. In brief, that means recommended structures and ways of integrating IT products and services to form an overall solution for the construction industry, at EU level. This reference architecture will embody the best practice gathered from the stakeholders, in order to design the optimal delivery method for these specific technologies.

Actions and key dates

November 2018 – Submission of DigiPLACE proposal
March 2019 – Notification of "preferred proposal" from the Commission to the partners
01/09/2019 – Launch of project (
21/11/2019 – First Advisory Board meeting and launch conference in Bologna
27/02/2020 – Second Advisory Board meeting (virtual due to lockdown in Milan)
March 2020 – Call for experts to join the Community of Stakeholders

The European Council for Construction Research, Development and Innovation (ECCREDI) was created in Brussels on 19 December 1995 with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by representatives of European federations concerned with construction, in its widest sense. The aim of ECCREDI is to contribute to the competitiveness, quality, safety and environmental performance of the construction sector and to the overall sustainability of the built environment — all urban and transport infrastructures — by advocating for effective construction research, technological and process development and innovation. ECCREDI adds value as a European council that connects its members and establishes areas of common interest, for which joint action is more successful than isolated approaches from individual members.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC is a member of ECCREDI and currently holds the presidency. FIEC is able to achieve more by pooling its resources with ECCREDI members, than by acting alone. The current priority is to ensure that Horizon Europe (the next research framework programme) contains adequate opportunities for contractors. Specifically, FIEC co-signed a communication, which asked for a Co-programmed European Partnership for the Built Environment and Construction. Following the submission of 44 partnership proposals, including one for a "People-centric sustainable built environment" (BUILD4EUROPE), ECCREDI is now working with the European Construction Technology Platform (ECTP) and other stakeholders, to prepare a proposal for the governance of this partnership. The first draft was completed in December 2019 and a revision is currently being prepared on the basis of feedback from the European Commission.

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Actions and key dates

11/04/2019 – ECCREDI Communication on Horizon Europe
14/10/2019 – Stakeholder meeting with European Commission
12/12/2019 – Stakeholder meeting and agreement on proposal for governance of partnership BUILD4EUROPE
March 2020 – Revision of partnership proposal (renamed Built4People)
12-13 May 2020 – ECCREDI workshop and Council meeting
July 2020 – Final agreement by Member States on choice of successful partnerships

The European Construction, built environment and energy efficient building Technology Platform (ECTP) is a leading membership organisation promoting and influencing the future of the Built Environment. First founded in 2004 ECTP brings together the collective vision for a leading edge European Built Environment on behalf of its Members. ECTP has around 150 member organisations from across the construction sector and other sectors from the whole supply chain of the Built Environment.

Its diverse membership across 26 countries, large enterprises, SMEs, universities, research organisations and professional associations allows it to take an integrated approach to tackling all relevant issues. It connects people and organisations from across the supply chain, helping them to work collectively to improve the position on many societal and industrial issues including energy, climate change, efficiency and infrastructure.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC is a member of ECTP and also has a representative on the Steering Committee. Its membership enables the federation to ensure that specific research programmes are appropriate for the construction industry. It is also a way of finding potential partners for projects, or for being invited to participate by other organisations, in appropriate research and other EU projects.

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Actions and key dates

13/11/2019 – Election of Fl EC representative on ECTP Steering Committee
12/12/2019 – ECTP co-ordinated drafting of partnership proposal for Horizon Europe (Built4People), which was presented in a Stakeholder Meeting hosted by the European Commission.

Directive (EU) 2018/844 of 30 May 2018 amending Directive 2010/31/EU on the energy performance of buildings and Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency. The EPBD is the EU's main legislative instrument promoting the improvement of the energy performance of buildings within the EU.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
Buildings are responsible for approximately 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions in the EU. Currently, about 35% of the EU's buildings are over 50 years old and almost 75% of the building stock is energy inefficient, while only 0.4-1.2% of the building stock is renovated each year. Therefore, more renovation of existing buildings has the potential to lead to significant energy savings. Investments in energy efficiency can stimulate the construction industry. SMEs would particularly benefit from a boosted renovation market, as they contribute more than 70% of the value added in the EU building sector. Once the amended Directive was adopted in 2018, FIEC's main objective was to follow the development of the Smart Readiness Indicator (SRI) and lobby accordingly. FIEC joined recent stakeholder meetings and participated in a task group, which looked at the value proposition of the SRI. We also participated in the feasibility study for a building renovation passport. Now, having learned that the IEPBD is set to be revised again, according to the new Circular Economy Action Plan (see separate fact sheet) our priority will be to follow any proposal and work on a new position.

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Actions and key dates

30/05/2018 – Directive (EU) amending Directive 2010/31/EU on the energy performance of buildings and Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency
18/12/2018 – Feasibility study launched on optional building renovation passport
26/03/2019 – Stakeholder group and topical workshop on value proposition of SRI
24/06/2019 – Stakeholder meeting on study on building renovation passports
09/10/2019 – Stakeholder group and topical workshop on SRI
28/11/2019 – Stakeholder meeting on study on building renovation passports
11/03/2020 – Reference to a further revision of the EPBD, in the new Circular Economy Action Plan.

The concept of a building passport has been discussed for several years in various fora, including the European Commission "Construction 2020"'s Thematic Group 1 on "Stimulating investment in building renovation, infrastructure and innovation." The Global Alliance for Building and Construction (Global ABC) is a separate organisation that was established during COP21 in Paris. In 2018, the two initiatives collaborated, in order to start work on more specific proposals for a building passport. A Task Force was set up for this purpose. Any passport would be voluntary and would provide a record of all activity during the building's life time, e.g. scheduled maintenance of heating systems, renovation works, changes of ownership etc. The passport could be used for valuation purposes. The concept has been compared with a log book for a car. However, the current format has been changed to "Frequently Asked Questions"; and the Construction 2020 version has become a digital log book, for which a study is currently taking place.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
FIEC is a member of the Global ABC Building Passport Task Force. The federation wishes to contribute to the work that is taking place, with a view to ensuring that any such passport is practical, easy to use, linked to Building Information Modelling (BIM) and adds value for all parties in the construction ecosystem, including of course contractors.

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Actions and key dates

29/06/2018 – Global ABC meeting to discuss building passport concept
05/02/2019 – Building Passport Task Force kick-off meeting
14/10/2019 – Draft guidelines discussed and amendments invited
16/03/2020 – Format changed to FAQs and Task Force meeting heldFormat changed to FAQs and Task Force meeting held

Research funding from the European Union is allocated via a rolling seven year programme, which used to be known as the "Framework" programme. The last programme with this title was "Framework 7" and the one after, renamed Horizon 2020, will come to an end in 2020, with very few calls for projects still to be published. Horizon Europe will be the new programme, for which calls for projects are expected to start being published in 2021. This research funding has the overarching aim of securing Europe's global competitiveness, by helping to drive economic growth and create jobs. Research is seen to be an investment in our future and it is at the heart of the EU's blueprint for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and jobs. Horizon emphasises excellent science, industrial leadership and the need to tackle societal challenges. The goal is to ensure that Europe produces world-class science, removes barriers to innovation and makes it easier for the public and private sectors to work together in delivering innovation. Horizon Europe has a proposed budget of €100BN. However, this is unlikely to be finalised until after the UK leaves the European Union, as this event may well impact the amount that can be allocated.

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
Horizon Europe funding will be allocated according to a number of partnerships, between the Commission and relevant stakeholders, which will be agreed in 2020. 48 partnerships have been proposed, but not all will be accepted. The relevant partnership proposed for construction, important for FIEC, its members and their companies is the one with the working title "People centric sustainable built environment" or BUILT4PEOPLE. In addition to work done during the summer and early autumn of 2019, to contribute to the European Commission's Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA), FIEC is a key player in the development of a proposal which will explain how the partnership will be structured and will outline the context, objectives and expected impacts of the BUILT4PEOPLE partnership as well as the expected deliverables. This document is crucial in terms of the decision making by Member States, who will select the successful partnerships based on their completed proposals. Therefore, the document has to be relevant to the needs of contractors in terms of the kinds of research programmes that will ultimately be agreed and the subsequent calls for projects, which will be aimed at universities and industry partners. If the proposal is not accepted, there will be no funding for construction research under Horizon Europe that is directly linked to the needs of contractors and the other relevant stakeholders in the value chain.

Actions and key dates

14/10/2019 – Stakeholder meeting with European Commission, to discuss template for partnership proposal and agree process and deadlines
4/11/2019 – First draft document for comments from stakeholders
15/11/2019 – Second draft document for comments from stakeholders
End November 2019 – Deadline for completed document
12/12/2019 – Stakeholder meeting with European Commission to agree partnership proposal
Q1 2020 – Further consultation, e.g. with members of participating stakeholder organisations

The European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) is an association that brings together the National Standardisation Bodies of 34 European countries. CEN is one of three European Standardisation Organisations (together with CENELEC and ETSI) that have been officially recognised by the European Union and by the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) as being responsible for developing and defining voluntary standards at European level. CEN provides a platform for the development of European Standards and other technical documents in relation to various kinds of products, materials, services and processes. For construction, although standards remain voluntary, they effectively become mandatory in reality under the Construction Products Regulation (CPR 305/2011) (see separate document).

Why FIEC is dealing with this topic
Contractors are significantly affected by standardisation. They need to be represented in the process of developing standards and often cannot give time to the activity, which is both time consuming and costly, because meetings are held all over Europe. As well as representing contractors when they cannot do it themselves, FIEC and its member federations influence standardisation at EU and national level in a number of ways. These include FIEC's role as a CEN Partner Organisation with observer status on the CEN Technical Board and on CEN Technical Committees and Working Groups. FIEC also participates in the CEN Construction Sector Network Core Group. Its member federations participate in the national mirror committees and also by lobbying the National Standards Organisations in their own countries.

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Actions and key dates

February 2020 – CEN communication campaign "Standards Build Trust". FIEC involved.