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Improved City Halls by 2050: EVVC welcomes Climate Protection Programs of the Federal Government

On December 03, 2014, the Federal Administration passed the “National Action Plan Energy Efficiency (NAPE)” of the Federal Ministry for the Economy and Energy (BMWi), as well as the “Action Program Climate Protection 2020” of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Reactor Safety (BMUB), setting very high goals. Energy efficiency should become a central part of a sustainable energy transition, to achieve the national climate protection goal of lowering CO2 emissions by 40% by the year 2020 (compared to 1990).

Energy efficiency of buildings is part of the action plan: The Federal Government aims at making its buildings entirely carbon neutral by 2050. Public city – and multifunctional halls, convention centers and event venues, make a significant percentage of current energy loss in non-residential buildings. The KfW Bank will raise their funding program by 200 million Euros to two billion Euros annually to activate this process and finance the renovation project.

The European Association of Event Centers eV (EVVC), representing about 750 city – and multifunctional halls, convention centers and event venues in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and neighboring European countries emphatically welcomes the Federal Government’s action plan.

Event venues are instruments and engines of economic development, and are an important part of any community. However, we see a backlog with the renovation of most venues for cultural and social events.

If we don’t take any action soon, many of these building may not be rented out anymore in the future, for reasons of fire protection and security on the one hand, but also for reasons of wear and tear and the esthetics of an outdated zeitgeist on the other hand.

“It is a fact that the financial situation of the communities will not improve,” said Joachim Koenig, President EVVC and Director at the Hanover Congress Center. “It is high time that cities and communities invest in the modernization of their event venues to minimize financial burden in the future, and at the same time make a much needed contribution to the energy trends.

From the EVVC’s perspective it is very positive that the Federal Government will now go beyond granting easy credits, and offer tax incentives for the reconstructions, which will be profitable for the communities. It would be essential to compensate for lost grants of Federal and State in the form of direct funding, similar to the protection of historical buildings and monuments.”