Incentive initiatives on energy-efficient renovation of existing buildings towards carbon–neutral blueprints in China: Advancements, challenges and prospects

Zhengxuan Liu, Chenxi Yu*, Queena K. Qian, Ruopeng Huang, Kairui You, Henk Visscher, Guoqiang Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
22 Downloads (Pure)


Under China's national strategy of carbon neutrality by 2060, it is urgently necessary and challenging for the governments to proactively explore policy tools to facilitate energy-efficient renovation of existing buildings. Currently, a considerable number of studies have been conducted on building energy-efficient renovation and its derivative topics, however, a comprehensive overview on incentive initiatives related to existing renovation practices in China is still scarce, such as a lack of critical correlation analysis between national and local initiatives, a lack of the synthesis and critique towards the latest policies and related achievements, and inadequate generalization of the diverse and multi-layered barriers and challenges in building energy-efficient renovation practices. To address these issues, this paper adopts a diversified policy segmentation approach to deeply analyze the dynamic evolution of the incentive initiatives from both national and local level perspectives, as well as to establish the related network of policy linkages between national to local, and between different localities. In addition, this paper presents a critical analysis on representative initiatives in two batches of pilot cities, and proposes good practices and valuable experiences for building energy-efficient renovation. Finally, this paper further summarizes and discusses the barriers to building energy-efficient renovation from four perspectives: governments, householders, enterprises and research institutions, and proposes a series of targeted and feasible pathways and strategies. This study can provide theoretical guidance and targeted recommendations for the formulation of policies, standards and regulations for building energy-efficient renovation in China.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113343
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository 'You share, we take care!' - Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Carbon-neutral
  • Energy-efficient renovation
  • Existing buildings
  • Incentive initiatives
  • National and local policies
  • Sustainable development


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