The role of refurbishment companies and skilled craft workers

How to make energy efficiency policies in buildings deliver?

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In 2015, Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy published its Energy Efficiency Strategy for Buildings, based on the goal of achieving a virtually climate-neutral building stock by 2050 in line with the Federal Government’s energy concept. However, despite the broad policy support for increasing energy efficiency and renewable energies in buildings, Germany is falling short of delivering the progress needed for meeting the targets. While there is an extensive literature on the various economic and non-economic barriers to energy efficiency, the role of skilled craft workers as important actors in increasing energy efficiency and renewable energy shares in buildings has been discussed only marginally. The paper confirms previous estimates of the order of magnitude of additional workers that would be needed to meet the renovation targets. In parallel and drawing on an online survey with more than 300 home owners, our study analyzes the extent to which difficulties to find skilled craft workers and/or get adequate offers can be a barrier to renovation works, also comparing with the