Exemplary role of public authorities

Updated: 17.11.2018

Author: Flora Borek

The exemplary role of public authorities in accordance with Art. 13 § 5 RES Directive is based on Art. 15a of the Austrian Federal Constitutional Law (B-VG). Pursuant to this article, the Article 15a B-VG Agreement was concluded between the Austrian federation and the federal states, which defines the measures for the purpose of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the building sector. The contracting parties agreed that they shall exert an exemplary role in terms of a preferably energy-efficient management of the buildings used by them, including the “widest possible use of renewable energy sources” (art. 1 para. 1 Article 15a B-VG Agreement).

Furthermore, minimum heating requirements for the construction and remediation of publicly-used buildings have been defined in the agreement. However, these only take into account energy-efficiency criteria. The use of renewable energy sources is subject to the legislation of the federal states.

Furthermore, the Act on Energy Efficiency (EEffG) obliges to energetic refurbishments up to a share of 3% of all public buildings owned by the federal government until 2020. The regulation is also obligatory for the quasi-governmental Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft, which manages publicly owned real estate in Austria (§16 para. 1 EEffG). The act clearly sets an exemplary role for the state (§12 para. 1 EEffG). The act should also contribute indirectly to the increase of the proportion of RES and the decrease of GHG-emissions (§2 para. 6 c). Moreover, the act sets an obligation to newly erected buildings owned by the federal government to fulfil the criteria of nearly zero-energy buildings by 31 December 2018 (Niedrigstenergiegebäuden) (§16 para. 10 EEffG). Nearly zero-energy buildings are defined as buildings with very low or zero energy consumption or a very high energy efficiency. The criteria might be fulfilled due to the deployment of RES (§5 para. 1 subpara. 16).


Public authorities on federal and regional level.

Competent authority

The implementation lies in the competence of the respective federal or local authorities.