France

Link to full info sheet as PDF

Code Development

Summary

France has had prescriptive building energy efficiency requirements since 1955. The first performance-based standard was implemented in 2005 following the release of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) requirements in 2002. The RT2012 reflect the demands of the EPBD recast, with compliant buildings aiming to be approximately 40% more efficient than buildings built according to the 2005 regulations. 

Start Year

Exact Start Year

1955

Start Year Range

< 1980

Revision Schedule

Yes, a revision schedule exists

Revision Schedule Explanation

The energy regulations for new buildings are modified in France at periodic time intervals. The latest updates were RT2000 in 2000 and RT2005 in 2005. The government has announced plans to update the regulations two more times by 2020.

Existing Code Coverage

  • Commercial
  • Residential
Stakeholder Engagement

  • Working group
  • Technical Committee
  • Websites
  • Public Meeting or Conference or Newsletter
Best Practices

Code Implementation - Compliance & Enforcement

Administrative/Enforcement Structures

A contractor/developer must submit an energy simulation to a national database and produce a document certifying that thermal regulation have been taken into account. A third-party expert inspects buildings during construction and forwards to the examining board a document certifying compliance with the building thermal regulation. 

Compliance Checking on Design

Yes, compliance is checked on Design

Compliance Checking on Construction

Yes, compliance is checked on Construction

Compliance Checking on Pre-Occupancy

Yes, compliance is checked on Pre-Occupancy

Air Tightness testing

NA, Check Country Information Sheet for details

Commissioning before occupancy

NA, Check Country Information Sheet for details

Commissioning after occupancy

Yes, commissioning is happening after occupancy

Compliance Software Residential

Yes, Software exists

Name of Software

3F; DEL6-DPE; Clima-Win; Cypebat; DesignBuilder; Lesosai; Visual TTH; ArchiWisard; U22WinRT 2011

Short description

The French compliance software is integrated with a simulation engine. As part of the energy simulation to demonstrate compliance, regard must be had for the following: Bbio: assesses the performance and orientation of the building; Cep: assesses the primary energy consumption of the systems; Tic: assesses the internal comfort of the building during the summer months.  

Compliance Software Non-Residential

Yes, Software exists

Name of Software

3F; DEL6-DPE; Clima-Win; Cypebat; DesignBuilder; Lesosai; Visual TTH; ArchiWisard; U22WinRT 2011

Penalties for non-compliance

  • Refusal Permission to occupy
  • Other

Other penalties

Fines are imposed for non-compliance

Incentives and Recognition program for compliance

  • Awards/Grants/Tax Breaks
  • Finance/Loans/Ratings

Short description

Low Energy Building (LEB) labeling recognizes new projects that meet or exceed RT-2012. High energy performance (HEP) label is available for renovations. Interest-free loans available to first-time home buyers who purchase homes that meet or exceed RT-2012. Tax breaks are offered to developers, including property tax exemption and income tax discounts for investors in low energy buildings.

Compliance Rate monitoring

NA, Check Country Information Sheet for details

Short description

Compliance levels are assessed under a pilot scheme called PREBAT.

Compliance Rate Publicised

NA, Check Country Information Sheet for details

Compliance Lessons Learned

Yes, it exists

Short description

France has been moving away from calculations on paper to measurement of the actual building and monitoring the quality of the finished product. In order to demonstrate compliance, airtightness testing must be conducted on all new residential buildings.  A lot of training and education has been provided to designers and trades people on how to appropriately conduct these tests.

Compliance Energy Use Statistics

Yes, it exists

Short description

Since 1 April 2013, auditors are obliged to forward the Energy Performance Diagnosis they have carried out to the l’Agence de l’environnement et de la maîtrise de l’énergie (ADEME) in order to create a common database: this information will help improve the knowledge of the energy performance of the building stock.

Compliance Rate in %

NA, Check Country Information Sheet for details

Capacity Building and Education

Awareness Raising

  • Awareness raising
  • Resourse kits
  • Compliance Training
  • Online resources -
  • Professional Curriculum
  • Other

Other awareness raising

Energy performance qualifications e.g. QUALIBAT, QUALIFELEC, ECO Artisan

Short description

ADEME offer training for energy efficiency in buildings, advice on financial mechanisms, support demonstration projects and they collaborate with the FFB (French Building Federation). Support to provide RD&D projects, leading to demonstration buildings. ADEME also raises awareness about energy saving methods through public campaigns. A national one-stop approach to renovation of private dwellings has been established.

Building materials

Building Materials Ratings

  • Reference standards included in codes
  • Tested by certified test labs

Short description

France follows European certification CE marking, which is mandatory for construction materials and covers aspects of energy economy. EU has also adopted EN 15804 (2012) Sustainability of construction works, which provides rules for reporting life cycle assessment information.

Energy Performance Certificates

EPC Implementation

  • EPCs are referred to in codes -
  • Mandatory disclosure commercial -
  • Mandatory disclosure residential -

Short description

EPCs are mandatory for all new buildings and for existing buildings at time of sale and rental.