Background

Continuous growth of the population and the economy as well as an accelerated urbanisation increase the demand for living areas in urban centres in the MENA region. This brings along a rising energy demand for heating and air-conditioning, which is primarily covered by fossil fuels so far. With improving living standards often resulting in additional installations of – usually rather inefficient – space cooling equipment, it is particularly the cooling energy demand that grows.

Today, the building sector accounts for about 50 Mtoe, which is roughly one third of the region’s total annual energy consumption. Without any suitable counter measures, this share is expected to even grow to 70 Mtoe (+40 %) by 2030. If the current trend holds on, lock-in effects will compromise the region’s transition towards a low-carbon society due to the long life and renovation cycles of buildings. Efforts to limit the growing energy demand in these countries can reduce their dependency from energy imports, improve energy security and grant new economic opportunities.

By supporting the implementation of pilot projects accompanied by a policy dialogue, the project’s main objective is to increase the energy performance standard in the buildings sector of the MENA region.

To reach our global objectives of the Paris Agreement on climate change, greenhouse gas emissions caused by the building sector need to be cut by at least 80 per cent by 2050. Transforming the building sector is, hence, one of the major challenges to achieve these targets. While high energy saving potentials exist especially in cooling in countries of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region still many barriers prevail. Navigant experts Sven Schirmschar, Karoline Steinbacher, and Moritz Schäfer discuss barriers and potentials of energy efficient heating and cooling in Lebanon, Egypt, and Jordan in this interview: https://www.international-climate-initiative.com/en/news/article/interview_climate-friendly_technologies_in_mena/.

This project is part of the International Climate Initiative. The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU) supports this initiative on the basis of a decision taken by the German parliament (Bundestag).

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