Building-integrated solar

Building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) is the technology that integrates solar elements into buildings to generate electricity. BIPV is extremely versatile: it can be applied to curved surfaces; they can be custom-made; they can be different colours or transparent so that they can be integrated into windows; and BIPV can even be made from flexible material. This wide variety of BIPV products will support energy consumers, as BIPV can adapt to the specific needs of customers.

The EU’s Energy Performance of Buildings Directive requires all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by the end of 2020. BIPV is crucial for the decarbonisation of the building stock in Europe. Today, buildings are responsible for 36% of the EU’s CO2 emissions, but buildings could supply 32% of the EU’s energy demand – if they used on-site generation installations, such as solar panels or building-integrated solar (BIPV).

Europe is a world leader in BIPV, with more than 200 products currently available on the market. The annual cumulated European installed capacity of BIPV is expected to surpass 11 GW by 2020.

The further development of the BIPV sector is very much linked to the evolution of the regulatory framework. Important pieces of European legislation have been discussed by the European Parliament and the Council including the European Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD).

The adoption of the EPBD is an important step towards smarter and more sustainable buildings and its implementation will have a direct impact in the BIPV sector. Other legislative initiatives such as the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Directives should facilitate ambitious minimum requirements for the development of renewable energies in buildings and accelerate the renovation of Europe’s existing building stock.

Join SolarPower Europe’s BIPV Task Force

SolarPower Europe works to promote the development of BIPV technologies, advocating for an ambitious vision for the decarbonisation of the building stock while pushing the interests of the European BIPV industry.  

If you are interested in joining this Task Force, contact Miguel Herrero Cangas

Objectives:

  • Establish direct contact with European institutions to highlight current significant gaps and the need for strengthened incentives for BIPV
  • Focus on industry and market development needs, taking an integrated approach over value chain, voice/expertise of the industry
  • Raising visibility and awareness about the potential of BIPV to help the decarbonization goals and renewable energy targets
  • Establish partnerships with cities, architects the construction and building sectors as well as other interested stakeholders.

Key activities and deliverables:

  • Influence concrete European legislation to facilitate the integration of BIPV systems, targeting among others:
  • Energy Performance of Buildings Directive and Smart Readiness Indicator
  • Energy Efficiency Directive
  • Renewable Energy Directive
  • Ecodesign and energy labelling
  • Construction Products Regulation
  • The organisation of webinars and workshops
  • Producing reports

“BIPV in Europe is today at a turning point. The market is ready, and actually in need of new PV solutions for cities and the technology is mature. Europe has the opportunity to become the uncontested leader of BIPV worldwide as European players have today the best products on the market.”

Alexandra Sombsthay

VP European & International Public Affairs at Akuo Energy and Chair of SolarPower Europe’s BIPV Task Force

Beautiful building-integrated solar across Europe:

Photos: Brynseng School in Oslo, Norway (©NCC), Copenhagen International School (© CF Møller)

'Solar Skins: An opportunity for greener cities'

This report from SolarPower Europe’s BIPV Task Force demonstrates how local authorities can benefit from BIPV technologies to decarbonise their building stock and how an increased uptake of BIPV could propel a promising European-based industry, delivering local and highly skilled jobs in the energy and construction sector.

webinar: What's next for bipv in Europe?

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