From January 15th till 18th, 2024, the EU Renovation Week took place in Brussels. Central theme of that week ? an initiative of the Belgian Presidency of the European Council : the transition of the building sector towards a sustainable future.
ELCA was panellist on January 16th in a session about the successful partnership between government and the building sector in climate adaptation in the urban area.
Egbert Roozen, Secretary General of ELCA, emphasized the benefits of greenery, nature-based solutions and the role of the landscapers and gardeners in the transition towards a sustainable and healthy living environment. He gave an overview of different examples of fruitful cooperations between governmental institutions at EU, national and local level and the landscape and gardening sector in the past 10 years that contributed to more awareness and application of green solutions.
To enhance the development of a sustainable living environment, Egbert pleaded for more partnership with the building sector and to make more use of each other’s competences and innovative power. The building sector is strong in standardization, working according to certification, volume and upscaling, where the green sector is strong in the creation and maintenance of area and object oriented green solutions.
The ultimate sustainable recipe is a mix of technical and nature-based solutions. Solar panels on a green roof are maybe the most simple example of that. They deliver more energy and last longer on a green roof in comparison with a traditional roof.
In his contribution, Egbert Roozen also focused on the upcoming EU Nature Restoration Law and the great opportunities that he sees for greening the urban area under this law.
The panel was hosted by Filip van den Abeele. Other panellist were Ms Wendy Francken (president of the European Water Association), Mr Christophe Pelgrims (head of the department Environment and Spatial Planning of the Flemish Government) and Mr Niels Kuijpens (researcher at Hanze Hogeschool Groningen). Mr Robin De Smedt, of the Department of Environment and Spacial Planning, gave an introductory speech on The GreenBlue Level and Mr Marc Dillen of Embuild Flanders presented different showcases of the building sector.