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Energy use stamp still not used on 65 per cent of properties

EU target for all new buildings is for these to be nearly zero-energy by 2020

Anyone selling or leasing a dwelling or commercial premises must produce the energy-efficiency certificate.

Anyone selling or leasing a dwelling or commercial premises must produce the energy-efficiency certificate.

Properties certified for energy efficiency have tripled in number over the last two years, but the majority remain uncertified despite new regulations in force.

As of March 1, all property placed on the market for sale or rent must have an Energy Performance Certificate before the date of entering the promise of sale or rent agreement. When buildings which already have an EPC are put on the market, sellers should indicate the EPC rating when advertising the property.

An Infrastructure Ministry spokeswoman told the Times of Malta 31,201 properties had been certified by the end of 2017, up from 10,586 two years earlier.

But she was unable to provide an update on the properties that would have to be certified in line with EU regulations. At the end of 2015, this figure was estimated at about 85,000.

The number of assessors able to certify has gone from 165 to 359

Even assuming the number of properties has not increased since, this would mean some 65 per cent still require certification.

The certificate is similar to a household electrical appliance energy label, with a scale bar showing the energy rating of a building and its carbon emissions, with zero being the most energy efficient. The assessment process typically includes recommendations for improving the building’s energy efficiency.

By law, anyone selling or leasing dwelling or commercial premises must produce the energy-efficiency certificate – which remains valid for 10 years – to the buyer or tenant before signing a promise of sale or rental agreement. Anyone building a new property must obtain certification, on the basis of the design rating, before submitting a development application to the Planning Authority.

The number of assessors qualified to provide certification has increased from 165 two years ago to 359 at present. According to EU figures, buildings are responsible for 40 per cent of energy consumption and 36 per cent of carbon dioxide emissions.

By improving energy efficiency, it is estimated that total EU energy consumption could be cut by up to six per cent and carbon emissions by about five per cent.

The EU has set a target for all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by 2020.

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