INSPIRE Knowledge Base

Use case “INSPIRE Harmonisation of Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) datasets

The European Union is giving more and more emphasis to its energy policies, whose strategy and actions are included in the Energy Union Package and the 2030 Framework for Climate and Energy. Buildings in which people live and work are responsible for an important portion of the energy consumption in Europe (approximately 40% of the primary energy consumption) and there are several policies and initiatives that are aiming at improving their energy performance.

In particular, the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (Directive 2010/31/EU, recently amended by the Directive 2018/844/EU) contains requirements about systems of certification of the energy performance of buildings to be adopted by Member States. For example, energy performance certificates (EPC) have to include the energy performance of a building and reference values such as minimum energy performance requirements in order to make it possible for owners or tenants of buildings to compare and assess their energy performance. Certificates have to be issued also for buildings where a total useful floor area over a certain threshold is occupied by a public authority and frequently visited by the public.

Moreover, these certificates contain location data related to energy consumption and energy efficiency, which are at the same time semantically rich and spatially detailed (at building level). Therefore, they contribute to improve considerably the data accuracy at local level, which is explicitly required by the energy efficiency policy instruments, aiming to overcome the current limitations of using top-down statistical approaches for energy efficiency assessments at local level.

In the policy context described above, the current lack of harmonisation of EPC at European level represents a barrier for different groups of stakeholders engaged in the energy policies lifecycle.

In this use case a methodology for the harmonisation of EPC datasets was designed, developed and tested with a regional authority managing a certificates’ register. Applying the same methodology to certificates’ registers managed by other national/regional authorities will contribute to achieve the harmonisation of the EPC datasets at European level.

The use case is being executed in collaboration with APRIE, the Water Resources and the Energy Agency of the Autonomous Province of Trento (IT).

The methodology, based on the INSPIRE principles, followed to execute the use case is shown in the table below, where a description of the use case, including its main steps, is provided. For the description of all the use cases of the Energy Pilot, the template adopted for the description of use cases included in the INSPIRE Data Specifications was re-used.


Use case 1 – INSPIRE Harmonisation of existing Energy Performance Certificate datasets and creation of a web application for accessing them

Primary user

  • Government:
    • Energy Policy makers at regional level
    • Energy Policy makers at local level


  • Businesses:
    • Energy auditors and certifiers
    • Companies working in the sector of energy renovation of buildings
    • ESCO
    • Utilities


  • Consumers:
    • Citizens (building/building unit owners/tenants)
    • Citizens (willing to buy/rent a building/building unit)

Data provider

  • Government:
    • Public Authorities managing an EPC register
  • Consumers:
    • Citizens (building/building unit owners)


To establish an accessible and interoperable common knowledge base for EPC datasets to support local government and private sector companies involved in energy efficiency policies.


To harmonise existing EPC datasets according to INSPIRE and to create a user friendly web application to make them accessible and re-usable.



  • Availability of EPC georeferenced datasets to be harmonised according to INSPIRE.
  • Availability of datasets needed to georeference those EPC datasets that are not georeferenced.


  • INSPIRE harmonised EPC datasets will be made accessible by means of INSPIRE Network Services (WMS + WFS), in order to be reused by any interested party for its own purposes.
  • INSPIRE harmonised EPC datasets will be made accessible to the interested users through a web application, which will enable easy visualisation/query of (part of) the datasets attributes.

Flow of Events – Basic Path (to georeference and harmonise the EPC dataset of Provincia Autonoma di Trento, IT)

Step 1

To access/obtain from Autonomous Province of Trento (PAT) the EPC dataset to be georeferenced using cadastral open datasets

Step 2

To access the cadastral open datasets

Step 3

To define a methodology to georeference the EPC dataset using cadastral data

Step 4

To implement the methodology, obtaining a georeferenced EPC dataset.

Step 5

To create the target data model extending the INSPIRE core data model for Buildings

Step 6

To transform the georeferenced EPC dataset into the INSPIRE extended target data model

Step 7

To publish the transformed dataset by means of INSPIRE Network Services (WMS + WFS)

Step 8

To use the harmonised dataset into a GIS client desktop application

Step 9

To develop a web application to make harmonized data accessible by non GIS experts

Step 10

To assess the possibility to apply the methodology (or enhance it) to other EPC datasets, managed by other organisations in other countries/regions



The main steps of the methodology are shown in the following figure.


The following results have been produced in the first phase of the use case (2016-2017):

A technical report of the activities executed in the first phase is available here.

Further activities will be carried out during the second phase of the use case (2018-2019):

  • maintain the target data model (creating a new version to cope with a new source data model);
  • transform the whole source dataset (currently applied only to public buildings of the Municipality of Trento);
  • enrich code list register content with more detailed description of code list values and translation in English;
  • update the UML target data model in Enterprise Architect providing the missing text describing the spatial objects;
  • continue to work on INSPIRE Network Services deployment;
  • improve Persistent Identifier management in the target schema;
  • support the partner to operationalise the use case workflows into its organisation;
  • re-use of the use case results in other regions/countries;
  • assess the sustainability of the solution developed.