Energy transition; Source: BMWi/Maria Parussel

© BMWi/Maria Parussel

Buildings and cities are to become more energy-efficient and climate-friendly. The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) today launched a joint research initiative for energy-efficient and climate-friendly buildings and neighbourhoods. The research initiative entitled "Solar-powered Buildings/Energy-efficient Cities" focuses on more energy-efficient technologies and the integration of renewable energies in order to advance the energy transition in buildings and cities. Primary energy demand in the building sector is to be reduced by 80% by 2050 compared to 2008. The projects aim to show how innovation and smart networking can help to create highly energy-efficient and liveable houses and neighbourhoods. Apart from technological aspects, they should take account of social policy and socio-economic aspects in particular.

"The research initiative provides an important basis for networking among the players in the building sector in the context of the energy transition. Its main purpose is to ensure that demographic change and its implications and the issue of sustainable and affordable living are part of the discussion alongside the technical aspects of the energy transition. We want to use an overarching approach as we develop solutions for energy-efficient buildings and cities for the future", Rainer Baake, State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, said.

"75 percent of Germany's population live in cities. We need a clean and affordable energy system that makes use of buildings, facades and roofs so that people living in cities can directly benefit from it. Research can make a considerable contribution to this," Johanna Wanka, Federal Minister of Education and Research, underlined.

The Federal Government has earmarked 150 million euros for the new research initiative "Solar-powered Buildings/Energy-efficient Cities" in the context of its Energy Research Programme. The projects will be funded for a period of up to five years.

The initiative is a contribution to the implementation of the "City of the Future Flagship Initiative" of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. It aims to promote innovation for sustainable cities. In addition, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research has just launched the "Kopernikus Projects", the largest research initiative in the context of the energy transition, which also aims at a clean and affordable energy system.

The funding initiative "EnEff.Gebäude.2050" (EnergyEfficientBuildings2050) of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, which was launched at the same time, complements the research initiative "Solar-powered Buildings/Energy-efficient Cities". In the context of the funding initiative "EnEff.Gebäude.2050", another 35 million euros is being made available for exemplary innovation and transformation projects in the building sector. The model projects aim to create incentives for a broad range of players in the building sector, thus contributing to the removal of barriers on the path towards a virtually climate-neutral building stock.