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You are here: Home / Data and maps / Indicators / Heating degree days / Heating degree days (CLIM 047) - Assessment published Nov 2012

Heating degree days (CLIM 047) - Assessment published Nov 2012

Generic metadata

Topics:

Climate change Climate change (Primary topic)

Energy Energy

Urban environment Urban environment

Tags:
heating degree | climate change | energy | climate change impacts
DPSIR: Impact
Typology: Descriptive indicator (Type A - What is happening to the environment and to humans?)
Indicator codes
  • CLIM 047
Dynamic
Temporal coverage:
1980-2009
 
Contents
 

Key policy question: How is climate change affecting the energy demand for space heating across Europe?

Key messages

  • The number of heating degree days (HDD) has decreased by an average of 16 per year since 1980. This helps reduce the demand for heating, particularly in northern and north-western Europe.
  • Climate change will affect future energy and electricity demand. Climate change is not expected to change total energy demand in Europe substantially across Europe, but there may be significant seasonal effects, with large regional differences.

Trend in heating degree days in the EU-27

Note: Trend in heating degree days in the EU-27 (1980 - 2009). Eurostat calculates heating degree days as (18 °C - Tmean) if Tmean is lower than 15 °C (heating threshold) and zero if Tmean is greater than or equal 15 °C; Tmean is the mean daily outdoor temperature, calculated as Tmean = (Tmin + Tmax / 2)

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Trend in heating degree days in the EU-27

Note: The map shows the trend in heating degree days in the EU-27 (1980-2009)

Data source:
Downloads and more info

Key assessment

Past trends

The number of heating degree days (HDD) has decreased by 13 % over the last 3 decades, yet with substantial interannual variation (Figure 1). Figure 2 shows that the decrease in HDD has not been homogeneous across Europe. The absolute decrease has been largest in the cool regions in northern Europe where heating demand is highest.

Projections

Temperatures in Europe are projected to continue to increase. Hence, the trend of decreasing numbers of HDD is very likely to continue, and most likely to accelerate. For example, the heat demand for space heating in 2050 was projected to decrease by 25 % in the UK [i], and by 9 % in the EU ([ii]).


[i] Martina Flörke et al., Climate Adaptation – modelling water scenarios and sectoral impacts. Final Report Contract N° DG ENV.D.2/SER/2009/0034 (Kassel, Germany: Center for Environmental Systems Research, University of Kassel, Oktober 28, 2011), http://circa.europa.eu/Public/irc/env/wfd/library?l=/framework_directive/climate_adaptation/climwatadapt_report.

[ii] Pre-publication of results from the ClimateCost project (http://www.climatecost.cc)

Data sources

More information about this indicator

See this indicator specification for more details.

Contacts and ownership

EEA Contact Info

Hans-Martin Füssel

Ownership

EEA Management Plan

2012 2.0.1 (note: EEA internal system)

Dates

Frequency of updates

Updates are scheduled every 4 years in October-December (Q4)
Document Actions
European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100