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"European Energy Service Initiative towards the EU 2020 energy saving targets" (EESI 2020)

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"EESI 2020 – the European Energy Service Initiative towards the EU 2020 energy saving targets" aimed at fostering the use of Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) in major cities and metropolitan regions across Europe such as Antwerp, Barcelona, Berlin, Dublin, Graz, Prague, Oslo, Sofia or Zagreb. Although many European cities have committed to energy saving actions, certain barriers are still hindering the use of EPC as a tool to open up saving potentials. These barriers are mainly of a non-technological nature such as the lack of systematic information, trust, procurement procedures, know-how or the lack of market facilitators. The aim of the EESI 2020 project was to address these barriers and to support the implementation of long-lasting local EPC programmes in the targeted large municipalities or metropolitan regions. Within the project team some experienced EPC project facilitators made the European best practice experiences on how to develop and facilitate an EPC project and programme available to new market players. Once trained to professionals, these new facilitators act as multipliers for the EPC concept in their region and secure long-term effects of EESI 2020.


  • Update, collection and promotion of essentials EPC documents in each participating country (Regional market analysis, EPC best practices database with almost 60 projects, tools for project evaluation, model contracts, etc.)
  • Development of an EPC facilitator guideline as well as specific marketing materials to complement and leverage the existing EPC related resources.
  • EPC facilitator trainings for more than 800 energy stakeholders based on a specific training kit adapted and translated to 9 languages.
  • Development of long-lasting local EPC programmes in the 7 large municipalities and metropolitan regions. 27 EPC projects implemented within the project framework with overall investment in energy efficiency of approx. 27 M€, CO2 emission reduction of 16,000 tons/a and 6,000 toe/a primary energy savings.
  • Implementation of ambitious EPC Promotion activities including the development of an EPC promotion platform, the preparation of EPC promotional videos in 9 languages, the participation to various regional and national events and the organisation of two European Energy Service Awards.

Lessons learned

  • Most of the prevailing barriers to EPC are of a non-technical character: trust in the EPC model, in the ESCO, in the savings promise; cultural change management; handling of complex procurement processes; legal and accounting issues; financing. For many (potential) EPC clients, an experienced EPC facilitator can be (part of) the solution to these issues and should therefore be seen (and supported) as key multiplier to unlock potentials.
  • The level of expertise needed to support a client through the whole EPC project cycle (including the demanding procurement process) cannot easily be transferred within one or two trainings. Therefore it makes a lot of sense to differentiate between two different facilitation levels: Project initiation on the one hand and procurement and implementation support on the other hand.
  • In young EPC markets, it is worthwhile to put significant extra efforts on the thorough development of the first EPC projects. As long as the viability of the EPC method has not been proven locally within a successful first project, the credibility and thus the market potential will remain very limited.

Partners and coordinator

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Berliner EnergieagenturGmbH
Contact point: 
Laurenz Hermann
+ 49 30 – 29 33 30 69


In brief

01/04/2013 to 01/04/2016
Contract number: 

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