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Getting BACs ready by 2026

A proportion of buildings in the Netherlands must have a Building Automation and Control System (BACS) to meet technical requirements for ESG legislation of the European Union by 2026. Taking stock of your buildings is an important first step.   

As described in our previous article, sustainability is high on the agenda in the real estate sector in the coming years, thanks to the introduction of new laws and regulations from the European Union. One of the first deadlines coming up in the Netherlands to meet EU legislation is related to Building Automation and Control System (BACS).  

BACS ready by 2026 

To save energy and reduce the carbon footprint, all building-related installations need to be automated. Think of lights going on and off automatically, rolling out blinds and regulating the temperature in the building. The system that reads and controls all this smart technology in a building is called the Building Automation and Control System (BACS).   

 According to Dutch laws and regulations, part of the buildings must be equipped with a BACS that meets the technical requirements according to NEN 52120 by 2026. This applies to all newly built utility buildings with a heating or air-conditioning system from 290 kW nominal power. For existing buildings, the BACS must be included when a generator is replaced and/or included in your MYP (multi-year maintenance plan) or renovation passport. 

3-Step roadmap to BACS compliance 

Here are the steps you can take to comply with the BACS legislation: 

  1. The first step to create a quick checklist of your building systems against which to confirm which ESG requirements you have already met and where you need to close the gap.   

At Deerns, we have developed a Quick Scan so that you can create a building inventory within a day. Our quick scan report shows which systems meet the requirements, where improvements are still needed as well as the rough costs involved and when they need to be adapted.  

2.   You then create an upgrade plan for the systems that are not yet compliant. 

3.   You include this upgrade plan in your multi-year maintenance plan.   

Installing a building automation and control system is critical for upgrading a multi-year maintenance plan. This may be especially challenging for SMME building owners who are more likely not to have BACS systems, nor a multi-year maintenance plan.  

If you are a tenant it is critical check the contracts to check who has responsibility for this plan and to collaborate with the building owner to ensure that necessary upgrades are included in the multi-year maintenance plan. 

BACS Benefits 

The advantage of automated systems is that they collect a considerable amount of data, and once this is submitted to the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), and should the building meet all the requirements, the next report is only due five years later in the Netherlands.   

Non-compliance triggers a warning and an annual audit until the building meets the legislated criteria. After a warning, fines follow with the ultimate penalty being a suspended license to operate the building.  

Connected and automated: the benefits  

It’s not all doom and gloom since BACS brings numerous benefits which is not only good for the climate, but also for the financial bottom line: 

  1. Think energy savings thanks to Smart System sensors which activate lighting and ventilation only when rooms are actually in use. 
  2. Since BACS also measure energy consumption within buildings via Energy Management Systems (EMS) they generate actionable data insights for further energy savings.  
  3. All of this information serves as input for your ESG sustainability reports such as CSRD and EU Taxonomy. All key facilities and floors are automatically measured, including actual consumption of CO₂, energy and water.  

Accurate energy consumption measurement and management is critical for a BACS-proof building. Stay tuned for more insights on this, as well as on ESG reporting in our ESG series. 

Would you like to get started today on surveying and automating your building. Get in touch with one of our experts.  

Let’s talk

Naomi Duivesteijn

Smart Building Advisor