Approximately 40% of all energy produced in Europe is consumed by buildings. 65% of this energy is used in the air conditioning of homes, premises or offices. Sustainable and efficient housing can reduce this figure by half.

Since the beginning of the economic crisis the price of electricity in the European Union has skyrocketed, according to the Eurostat tables the increase has been 33% while, for example, in the same period the rise in gas represents 14%. In Spain, we have more than doubled this average of European increase reaching a rise of 69%, which means that we have gone from paying €13.70 per 100 kw. In 2007 to €23.10 in the last half of 2016. This costliness of electricity, as we know, has provoked a major political and social debate.

To determine the causes of this shortage, it is important, firstly, to know how the price of electricity is fixed: 40% corresponds to tolls, which does not vary, 25% corresponds to taxes: VAT and tax on electricity, and the remaining 35% is fixed by wholesale electricity companies, by auction. Being ordered the companies producing from cheaper (renewable and nuclear) to more expensive (gas and oil), the price is set by the last megawatt hour to enter auction, and consequently the reference price is always marked by the most expensive which is gas.

The second main reason for this costliness is the high energy dependence on the exterior of Spain, 73%, 25 points higher than the EU average. Spain devotes approximately 5% of its GDP to the purchase of gas and oil abroad. Therefore, the payment of this “energy dependence” on the part of the coffers of the country has the consequence that these resources are not destined to other services.

This payment does not only affect the coffers of the country, but also the individuals. In these circumstances, we can ask ourselves why, when a family faces one of the most important financial decisions of their life, such as buying a home with mortgage financing, where it evaluates pros, cons, compares entities Banks, conditions and fees that they must be able to cover for a period between 15 to 30 years, does not take into account, in most cases, the energy mortgage that they  have to face, not only for a few years, but the whole period they are going to live in that dwelling. This mortgage equals the energy cost necessary to live comfortably (energy comfort). Possible buyers or renters of homes should make this calculation and take it into account when choosing the property where they are going to live.

As a country not only must we be efficient producing energy, but we must also reduce energy consumption, reducing the amount of that energy mortgage to almost 0. Sustainable and high energy-efficient homes are able to reduce energy demand by more than 75%. The energy rating is part of the value of the house and increasing its efficiency is a revaluation of it.

 

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