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    Romania energy efficiency programme cuts heating bills and helps climate

    Find out how a big Romania energy efficiency programme to renovate Soviet-era apartment buildings in Bucharest helps in the fight against climate change:

    • 20% of Romanians can’t afford to heat their homes. After these renovations, heating bills are cut 50% to 60%
    • Some of the residents didn’t like the idea of moving their pigeon coops from their roofs—until they found out how much money they’d save
    • The European Investment Bank finances a bigger portion of the deal than usual, because it represents action against climate change

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    Future Europe features a podcast episode from each of the EUs 28 Member States. Each episode tells the story of a project that illuminates the way Europeans will live in the future. All the stories are told through the voices of people involved in the projects.

    Romania energy efficiency transforms a district

    Florica’s apartment looks as good as new, even though her residential block in Sector 2 of Bucharest is one of many that dates back to Soviet times. The reason: a big programme of energy efficiency financed by the EU bank. “The whole facade of the building has been insulated and you can see the change already,” enthuses the sprightly old woman.

    Florica’s apartment is just one tiny corner of an extensive campaign to rehabilitate multi-family apartment blocks throughout the capital that’s financed, in part, with green bonds issued by the European Investment Bank.

    “These 450 rehabilitated buildings have changed the face of our district,” says Victorita Bocea, Sector 2’s Executive Director of Public Procurement.

    Health and Happiness with Romania energy efficiency

    The EIB investment in the Romania energy efficiency programme helps four key areas:

    • Applying thermal insulation on walls, doors and windows of hundreds of apartment blocks, greatly improving energy efficiency and reducing their CO2 impact
    • Reducing heat and energy bills by up to 60%, as well as creating more comfortable homes
    • Dramatically improving the appearance of buildings, the majority of which have had no work done on them since their construction forty years ago or more
    • Clearing up dilapidated areas and boosting the local economy with the creation of many construction jobs

    “We are providing 75% of the investment costs for a period of twenty two years”, says Fillip Vandeputte, an EIB energy efficiency engineer. “Normally the bank only provides 50%, but for climate action projects we want to accelerate these investments.”

    Benefits of Romania energy efficiency project

    After a hard day’s work, residents also like to return to an attractive building. “So there’s a psychological aspect too,” says Sector 2’s Bocea.

    Florica agrees. “Right now I would be very happy to welcome anyone who would like to come and inspect my apartment for themselves,” she says