February 2021 - Newsletter

Dear readers,

We are coming at the end of February, and after two months of 2021, the European economy is still struggling with the COVID19 scars yet trying to escape the uncertainty and move on to a recovery phase.

The policy trajectories will determine whether the EU will follow the “green” pathway of the Green Deal, creating a new horizon for creating jobs with clean energy and moving towards energy justice and inclusion, or will lock-in itself once more to fossil fuels, through making use of exceptions to the laws for maintaining them or expanding them further.

The message coming from financing groups, such as the EIB, is clear – funding to fossil fuels cannot be eligible in the future, as we do not have the luxury in terms of time for fighting climate change to use fossil pathways. Nevertheless, several Member States still try to ignore their citizen demands or the agreements made and subsidize fossil fuels (often hidden under various energy and climate policy frameworks), while in parallel they push for including polluting fuels within the EU Green Taxonomy.

The question though is not about what short term interests to serve; policy makers must listen to science (such as the EU Horizon 2020 project outputs you can find in this newsletter) and implement long term solutions for the benefit of all.

The EU Recovery funding streams are a unique opportunity for all Member States to think forward and shape the green energy future – we owe it to the next generation.

Kind regards,

Vlasis Oikonomou and the whole IEECP team



[Policy Brief] The role of the Energy Efficiency Directive article 7 in alleviating energy poverty

H2020 projects SocialWatt and ENSMOV join forces, making use of both projects’ learnings to deliver policy recommendations to improve the consideration of energy poverty through Article 7 of the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED).

Article 7 of the EED specifically requires European member states to consider the need to alleviate energy poverty in their design of Art.7 measures, but this requirement is not universally adopted. The briefing recommends that the provision on energy poverty in Art.7 should be fully implemented and, further, that the distributional equity – or who pays for and who benefits – from the measures delivered under Art.7 should be assessed, and measures put in place to address distributional inequities. More broadly, the climate and social goals within EED Article 7 and the wider European package must be better aligned.

[Column for eceee] Time for energy efficiency to be valued as grid resource, by RAP and IEECP

What if you, as an electricity consumer, could get compensated fairly for the energy you did not consume? Samuel Thomas, from the Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP) and Filippos Anagnostopoulos from IEECP, co-author a column for eceee, introducing a concept studied in the H2020-funded project SENSEI.

In the US, participants in Pay-for-Performance (P4P) schemes are being paid incentives to improve the energy efficiency of their buildings. Driven by the limited capacity of electricity networks and a willingness to innovate to get better value for money for bill payers, energy efficiency measures are being mobilised in residential and commercial buildings to improve grid reliability. The Horizon 2020 SENSEI project is working to develop the P4P model in the EU.

[Column for eceee] Let cost-effectiveness guide recovery funding to national efficiency programs
The column, co-authored by IEECP’s Jean-Sébastien Broc and Vlasis Oikonomou, talks cost effectiveness, national energy efficiency and refurbishment programs, Recovery Fund and more!

It relates to the introduction of cost effectiveness as a key criterion for allocating EU budget to national energy efficiency programs, - as this safeguards a sound public spending-, to achieve the highest benefits in energy savings and multiple impacts.

[Opinion] Hiding fossil fuel subsidies under clean energy targets?

Vlasis Oikonomou (IEECP) and Haris Doukas (NTUA) co-author a piece on the green taxonomy, natural gas subsidies under energy and climate policies in EU States as well as the need for transparent rules in the EU. 10 Member States requested for rules to allow them to consider natural gas as a transition fuel. This opens the discussion that there are many subsidies on natural gas (and other fossil fuels) under the umbrella of ambitious energy and climate policies in these countries and in the EU in general. The authors’ position is that, to safeguard climate targets’ integrity against greenwashing measures, transparent rules should be in place in the EU. They quote interesting projects such as H2020 PROSPECT and Triple A as resources to support project developers, local and regional authorities steering innovative financing to energy efficiency and climate friendly investments.

[Article] Long term matters: What kind of decarbonisation matters most?

Zsolt Lengyel co-authors with Dr Raj Thamotheram, a piece for the Investment and Pensions Europe (IPE) on decarbonisation and what to focus on if you are an investor, an asset manager, ESG or sustainability professional. The authors started by asking investors, in a Twitter poll, to choose a strategy to focus on, between portfolio decarbonisation, company decarbonisation, FSB Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) compliance or ‘other’. They share their (surprising) findings and corresponding thoughts in the article.

[Article] Will the arsonist become the best firefighter? The inspiring & historic case of the “Inaugural 2025 Target Setting Protocol” NZAOA - UN PRI - UNEP FI

Zsolt Lengyel writes on LinkedIN Pulse about a historic development: the first major attempt to convert 2050 pledges into short term (2025) transformative action halving global emissions by the 5 trillion UN convened Net Zero Asset Owner alliance. Their action instruction Protocol being out, Zsolt Lengyel writes a short piece balancing the value (historic nature) and the evident shortcomings (metrics; engagement etc). These developments put the H2020 Paris Reinforce work into the spotlight and can engage both the private and public sectors with modelers insights.

IEECP and ABN AMRO collaboration for energy efficient projects in The Netherlands

IEECP joins forces with the ABN AMRO bank in The Netherlands to work on 2 projects: ICCEE and Triple-A (to enhance, at an early stage, the investment value chain of energy efficiency (EE) projects, assist financial institutions to increase their deployment of capital in EE, and make investments more transparent). ABN AMRO will join IEECP in the coming ICCEE trainings, providing expertise on financing EE investments in Dutch companies (next workshop by IEECP with the support of ABN AMRO, Ecochain and Post HBO Koudetechniek, 16 and 25 March). ABN AMRO supports Triple-A assisting in the evaluation of EE proposed investments. IEECP and ABN AMRO working together allows both organizations to tap into the best of both worlds. Read more.

[Briefing] Triple-A Survey on Building Sector: The Case of Greece

This Triple-A Briefing Note analyses the results of the Triple-A stakeholder consultation in Greece. The consultation, a structured participatory approach, took place in June/July 2020. The Questionnaire was on the Building Sector, in cooperation with the Association of Greek Valuers (A.VA.G.), and received 77 responses by key stakeholders (i.e., bankers, investors, and real estate professionals).



Inventory of needs and requirements of National Authorities, from DEESME

Written by KAPE for the H2020 DEESME project, the report identifies needs and challenges for National Authorities in the implementation of Article 8 of the EU Energy Efficiency Directive, for energy audits and management systems in companies with a special focus on small and medium enterprises (SMEs). This report is a first step to drafting good practices for the National Authorities helping them overcome the identified challenges. The DEESME website just went live and provides loads of information on article of the EED, energy audits and management systems, and of course what the project aims at achieving.


Transferring global experience of “efficiency first” to the EU

This report, delivered by the enefirst H2020 project, highlights 16 international case examples of efficiency first in practice. Learning from international experience is key to helping policymakers in the EU and its Member States establish a level playing field between demand and supply-side resources, and thus embed the efficiency first decision-making principle in EU policy. However, the report highlights that truly putting demand-side resources on equal footing with supply side infrastructures, in all relevant instances, will require a custom set of policy and regulatory instruments that go beyond fragmented international practices.


Modelling approaches: quantitative assessments of demand and supply side resources in the context of the Efficiency First principle

The report provides modellers and policymakers guidance on conceptual implications and existing quantitative approaches for assessing demand and supply side resources in light of the Efficiency First (E1st) principle. It identifies existing modelling approaches associated with the concept of E1st, distinguishing the normative and exploratory approaches and considering different levels of analysis: national, utility, and buildings, showing there is no universal model for representing E1st and that each model-based assessment is nested in a trade-off between data needs and computational complexity versus robustness and credibility of the model outcomes.

Other news from enefirst include the release of an infographic providing insights on efficiency first, its policy background and enablers, and its February newsletter.


Food and beverage cold chains - Life cycle assessment and costing        

ICCEE is an EU-funded project, now at mid-term, working on improving the cold chain energy efficiency of the food and beverage sector. An ICCEE LCA/LCC tool was developed to allow the evaluation of environmental and economic impacts across the cold chain (global warming potential, cumulative energy demand and water scarcity, identifying hotspots, etc.). It can be used to acknowledge and recognize improvement opportunities by designing different scenarios. This short report presents the tool specificities and characteristics, output indicators, data collection procedures and data processing. The tool is not yet public, it is used during the trainings and/or while accompanying SMEs during audits led by the project partners.


The boundary cases for Pay-for-Performance (P4P) rates

What will it take for energy providers to support the rollout of energy efficiency measures?

H2020 SENSEI’s report and the attached Excel tool identify the market value of energy savings from the energy providers’ perspective. The transition of the electricity system towards complete decarbonisation requires the full integration of energy efficiency measures (EEMs) to reduce CO2 emissions on a long-term basis while avoiding the need for costly capacity and network upgrades. Successful integration of the EEMs is reliant upon developing a detailed knowledge of the various measures. Therefore, considering the value that the implemented measures bring to the overall energy system is a crucial factor when dealing with a pay-for-performance (P4P) scheme.

The report provides a concrete classification and evaluation of the various EEMs which provides the foundations for proposing a definition of a P4P rate that is transparent and a non-performance-based incentive that can be offered to energy providers.




Open Call for MICATool Pilot Cities

Emissions reductions, improved health, better air quality, and new employment opportunities are only a few examples of Multiple Impacts of Energy Efficiency. What are other ancillary benefits of energy efficiency measures? And how can your city assess and monitor them? MICAT – Multiple Impacts Calculation Tool is a H2020 project that aims to develop a comprehensive approach and user-friendly online tool to estimate the multiple impacts or multiple benefits of energy efficiency measures at 3 governance levels: EU, national, and local/regional. The project launches an open call for services to select 3 European municipalities to participate as MICATool Pilot Cities and help co-develop and explore the online tool’s efficacy in the context of the city’s local sustainability, energy efficiency, and/or climate action planning processes. Selected cities will receive exclusive training, networking opportunities, and 9,000€ in financial support in exchange for their active participation and expertise to help co-develop and validate the MICATool in their city over a two-year period. Applications are due by 17:00 CET, 1 March 2021.


Triple A shares preliminary results of its questionnaire on the building sector

H2020-funded Triple A shares with us the preliminary results of their forthcoming Report on Energy Efficiency in Building Stock & Correlation with Property Value. The report will analyse the current building stock situation in Greece and the behaviour of stakeholders, general public and professionals towards energy efficiency upgrades in buildings. The research focuses on identifying the main risks that could affect the successful implementation of energy efficiency projects in the building sector and how the Standardised Triple-A Toolscould contribute to the real estate sector, with results derived from the analysis of the Triple-A questionnaire of last summer, gathering nearly 100 participations.

stream SAVE: registration for the dialogue group kick-off meeting is now open to stakeholders

H2020-funded project streamSAVE aims to assist Member States in their effortsto deliver rapidly scalable savings and increase their chances of successfully meeting energy efficiency targets under Article 3 and 7 of the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED). A series of activities, divided into three categories, will be carried out with the intent of improving the energy saving methodologies capacities and skills of stakeholders across Europe.

On Friday, March 5, 2021 from 9:30 to 11:00 CET, streamSAVE will hold a meeting bringing together experts and policy officers from various EU Member States to discuss key issues surrounding the savings calculations for specific Priority Actions, or technical actions with high energy savings potential. You are invited to join the kick-off meeting to learn more about the streamSAVE project and the first five Priority Actions (PA) it will address, including heat recovery, building automation & control systems, refrigeration systems, electric vehicles, and lighting systems.



ICCEE e-learning platform

The ICCEE H2020-funded project is aimed at turning energy efficiency opportunities of food & beverage companies into actual investments and finding out opportunities to improve the overall cold chain steps. The project just launched a free e-learning platform, a Moodle available until end of 2021 in English, French, Romanian, Italian, Dutch, German, Greek, Spanish and Latvian! Topics include: Energy efficiency in the food and beverage sector, Energy performance indicators, Energy Management System based on ISO50001 and Measurement and Verification (IPMVP), Energy saving opportunities and best practices, Financial analysis and funding opportunities and more.

ICCEE latest newsletter is out, to get a comprehensive view of the progress updates: next trainings dates, latest publications, ICCEE's sister projects and more!

IEECP organised a short webinar to present the latest updates of ICCEE, and the progress towards 2021, introducing the soon released Industry Informative Network platform.

NUDGE: website goes live

Do you know what nudging means? Do you have ideas on how nudges can support in moving towards more energy efficient behaviours at home? H2020-funded project NUDGE is working on the topic and released a great bunch of material explaining what the project will do and how in the coming 3 years. Discover the used technologies, tools and five pilots on the project website and in a short webinar recording.

Triple-A project video

Discover Triple-A in 3 minutes! In case you missed it, see this short introductory video of how the project will make energy efficiency investments more transparent, predictable and attractive for investors / financiers and project developers.



Next enefirst webinar: Putting Efficiency First into practice – insights from the US and the EU

Join enefirst March 2, from 4.00 to 5.15 pm CET and hear from the barriers which can hinder the implementation of Efficiency First as well as insights on how Efficiency First is or could be integrated in different policy areas and instruments. Two guest speakers from RTE (Réseau de Transport d'Électricité) and CPUC (California Public Utilities Commission) will illustrate opportunities for Efficiency First, based on current developments related to the power system in California and in France.

Energy Evaluation 2021 – accelerating the energy transition for all: evaluation’s role in effective policymaking, March 10-11 and 15-16

Join IEECP online at Energy Evaluation 2021! IEECP will have two presentations: “Is there still time for evaluation? A review of good practices to integrate evaluation into the policy cycle”, by Jean-Sébastien Broc, “Lessons and open issues from the first period of the Energy Efficiency Obligation schemes and alternative measures in the EU?”, by Vlasis Oikonomou, and will moderate a session on energy efficiency indicators: “Views from the top: What can energy efficiency indicators and trends tell us about policies?” Moderator: Jean-Sébastien Broc.

Energy efficiency in the cold chains of the F&B sector: coming trainings

The trainings organised by ICCEE provide ways to overcome the main barriers, identifying existing funding opportunities and addressing other peculiarities to support the implementation of energy efficiency measures. First trainings have been organised in 2020 (in Spain, Italy and Latvia), new ones are already planned for 2021. They can be joined for free and are organised on a country basis. Next trainings: in Dutch, organised by IEECP, Workshop over energie-efficiëntie in de koelketen van de voedingsmiddelen en drankensector, March 16 and 25, 2021 and in German: Workshops zu Energieeffizienz in der Kühlkette, February 17-18 and March 17-18, 2021