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Description

For over a decade, European municipalities have been establishing initiatives, strategies and action plans to increase the energy efficiency of private and communal infrastructure. Municipalities of EU member states, enforced by the EU Directive on energy efficiency, must collaboratively work to ensure that by 2020 and 2030, an energy efficiency of 20% and of 32.5% are met, respectively.

Initiatives, such as the Covenant of Mayors, have been launched to foster commitment towards energy and climate targets. Signatories voluntarily agreed to increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources. To achieve this, participating municipalities drafted and submitted a Sustainability Energy Action Plan (SEAP), defining their energy saving and climate measures. More than 6000 municipalities have developed and approved a SEAP since 2008; however, when compared to the total number of municipalities across Europe, it proves that there is still a long way to go.

It has been identified that a municipality's building stock represents the single largest potential for energy savings. It is also expected that more than two-thirds of the world population will live in urban areas by 2050. Therefore, this solution aims to ease the conception and implementation of municipal energy saving measures.

Problems to be solved

 

Fossil fuel consumption

Carbon emissions

Detrimental urban air quality

Wasted energy

Unreliable energy supply

Low energy monitoring

Benefits

Functions

Functions help you to understand what the products can do for you and which ones will help you achieve your goals.
Each Solution has at least one mandatory function, which is needed to achieve the basic purpose of the Solution, and several additional functions, which are features that can be added to provide additional benefits.

Mandatory Functions
    Reduction of energy consumption

    Installed systems must demand less or allow for a lower energy consumption

    Optimisation of municipal energy load

    Installed systems must allow the optimal allocation of energy load

    Comply with local regulations on energy efficiency
Potential Functions
    Reutilisation of wasted energy
    Storage of energy

    Storage of excess electric and heat production

Variants

Energy saving actions follow two basic directions: efficiency and effectiveness. Efficiency, by new and improved performing systems; effectiveness, by improvements in control systems to avoid energy waste and by adopting a technical building management system. The following presents different measures in which these two directions have been applied.   

Description

Demand side management (DSM) is an essential component in energy management of smart grids. Generally, DSM means to manage the consumer’s energy usage in such a way to yield desired changes in load profile and facilitates the consumers by providing them incentives. For this purpose, various DSM techniques have been developed with diverse functionalities, including peak clipping, valley filling, load shifting, strategic conservation, strategic load growth, and flexible load shape. Furthermore, DSM is capable of handling the communication infrastructure between end user and utility and also enables the integration of distributed energy resources to optimize energy consumption profile.

Use Cases

Demand Side Response Control for Public buildings

The Use case aims at delivering strategic load curtailment in public buildings via existing BEMS.

Demand Side Response Control for Office Block (Academic Building)

The Use case aims at delivering strategic load curtailment in academic buildings via existing BEMS. 

Demand Side Response (DSR) Control for Student Accomodation

The use case aims to deliver strategic load curtailment in student accomodations via existing BEMS.

Description

Commercial and residential buildings are considered to be the infrastructure that has the highest energy consumption across Europe. In 2016, buildings represented almost 40% of the EU final energy consumption . In order to promote energy saving, building standards must enforce a whole building design.

This does not only apply to the new building stock, but to the existing as well. A recent study by DG Internal Policy reveals that the stock of residential buildings in the EU is rapidly aging, with more than 40% of them built before 1960, and 90% before 1990.

Use Cases

Energy efficient refurbishment of a residential building - Brf Årstakrönet

Under the GrowSmarter project, this measure focusses on energy efficient refurbishment of a residential building from 2007: Brf Årstakrönet, with 56 private condominiums.

Energy efficient refurbishment of the building - Educative centre Escola Sert

Gas Natural Fenosa has implemented energy refurbishment of an Educative center Escola Sert. The aim is to validate the technical and economic feasibility of adding renewable energy generation to a tertiary building in the form of building integrated photovoltaics (BIPVs) for self-consumption.

Smart building shell refurbishment in Cologne

To improve energy efficiency of existing residential buildings by 70% as part of EU Horizon 2020 GrowSmarter Project, renovation measures were undertaken. This includes building envelope insulation, high efficient windows, staircase lighting, elevator and heating system.

Description

Apart from Mediterranean countries, space heating represents 60-80% of the total energy consumption for European building stock. Consequently, there is a great potential for energy savings by improving the efficiency of space heating systems. One method that is currently gaining popularity is the recovery of wasted heat from sewage pipes through heat exchangers. Cold input water and output water of electric or gas boilers is heated by the system of heat exchangers and heat pumps.

Use Cases

Waste heat recovery from sewage water

The projects entails the installation of a heat exchanger and water-to-water heat pumps that will recover the heat from sewage water in order to improve the efficiency of gas fired heaters in schools

Description

One direct method to save energy is through storage. In periods of excess energy production, municipalities can store energy for later usage. A storage system widely used is through second life lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles. Li-ion batteries are deemed ineffectual for electric vehicles when it has reached an 80% charging capacity;, nevertheless, they can be used as a great storage system if repurposed adequately.

Use Cases

Reusing EV Batteries for Energy Storage

Solutions for re-purposing EVs' rather quickly deteriorating but valuable batteries. EV taxis of the private company OU Takso in Tartu will be partially recharged based on renewable energy that is produced on-site with PV panels and stored in used EV batteries improving the yield of the batteries.

Description

Energy use in water supply systems represents a considerable portion of the total energy consumption in a municipality. The electricity consumption due to water pumping represents the highest proportion of the energy costs in these systems. Considering energy savings in water supply is therefore a pressing matter.  
A measure to achieve this is recommended by Ioan Sarbu (2016) by either applying variable-speed pumps along the water supply network, or by implementing a smart controller that quantifies, locates, and adjusts the opening of control valves in the water supply network. The latter has been found by Araujo (2006), thatwhich minimiszes pressures and leakage levels in the network.

Use Cases

Smart meter information analysis and actuators

In Barcelona, Endesa deployed an innovative “Data Hub”, named Multiservice Concentrator (MSC), allocated in the secondary substation with the aim to serve as a data node, collecting and managing city data.

Description

In Europe, the amount of the electrical energy used in illuminating the interiors of buildings and streets is considered to be of about 40%.
Street lighting is one of the biggest electrical energy consumers, accounting for about 40 % of the total energy consumption in cities. At the same time, energy required to illuminate buildings is considered to be around 17% of all electricity consumed, making it the largest end use of electricity.
Implementations in smart lighting have been widely adopted across Europe due to its recognised energy saving potential.

Use Cases

Stand alone Smart Street Lighting in Stockholm

Under the Smart Lighting measure of the Grow Smarter project, the goal is to demonstrate and test three different technologies for smart street lighting: remote, self-controlled and sensor-controlled LED lighting. In this Use Case the focus is on a stand alone system

Smart Street Lighting in Tartu

The City of Tartu replaced 320 existing sodium lights in the city centre area of Tartu with energy efficient LED lighting. The new lighting and the  traffic and environmental sensors together with the wireless control units developed by Cityntel OU form a smart street lighting network.

Intelligent Street Lighting in Ludwigsburg

As part of the "Living LaB" innovation network in Ludwigsburg, this use case is an example of how cities can become "smarter" in the future.

Stakeholder Mapping

Business Model

Efficiency Performance Contracting (EPC) (ClimACT, 2017)

An energy performance-based business model proposes a partnership between customers and Energy Servicing Companies (ESCOs) to develop energy saving measures. EPC’s can be ofexecuted in two forms:, through shared-savings, or through a guaranteed-savings scheme. In a shared-savings EPS, an ESCO is remunerated based on the project’s generated energy saving and, the fee paid by the customer reimburses the capital costs of the project. In a guaranteed saving EPC, the ESCO takes on a technical risk, by guaranteeing a saving percentage on the customers energy bill. If the agreed savings are not achieved, the ESCO is required to reimburse the customer the difference between the actual savings and the agreed savings. The customer finances completely the measure, relying on the performance promised by the ESCO.

An EPC is well suited for large scale projects, especially in the public sector, because of high transaction costs and long payback times. Usually, the private sector is less attracted to contracts with long payback times. whichThis means that, in order to establish a contract in the private sector, ESCOs should focus on the implementation of ECMs with rapid return of investment. Difficulties to set up an energy baseline make it harder for the ESCO to predict energy savings and the measurement and verification process needed to follow up on the project results can be costly (Warget, 2011).

Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) (ClimACT, 2017)

In the Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) business model, the ESCO has complete control of the energy saving measure. They build, deploy, and operate the project through a given contracted period of time. At the end of the contract, the ESCO transfers the installation/system to the customer.

During the contracted period of time, the ESCO is in control of the energy saving measure and, a fee is charged to the customer for the service delivered. This way, the ESCO investment and operational costs are covered by the fees. The BOOT model is similar to a loan made by the ESCO to the costumer, which also includes energy management during the contract period.

Chauffage (EU JRC, 2021)

In a Chauffage Business Model, the ESCO takes over complete responsibility for providing the energy services (e.g. space heat, lighting, motive power, etc.) to the customer. As a form of outsourcing energy management, Chauffage is typically used in municipalities where the energy supply market is competitive. 

The ESCO assumes the responsibility for providing the agreed energy service for a cost lower than the previous service or for a more efficient service for the same cost. The more efficiently and cost-effective cheaply it can supply energy, the greater earnings the ESCO will have. Chauffage contracts give the strongest incentive to ESCOs to provide services in an efficient way. The fee paid by the municipality under a Chauffage arrangement is calculated on the basis of its existing energy bill minus a percentage saving (often in the range of 5-10%). Thus, the municipality is guaranteed an immediate saving relative to its current bill.

Chauffage contracts are typically very long (20-30 years) and the ESCO provides all the associated maintenance and operation during the contract. Chauffage contracts are very useful whenere the customer wants to outsource facility services and investment.

 

City Context

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE, 2020) has listed seven recommendations to implement and adopt energy savings systems:

  1. Continue harmonisation of building energy codes by ensuring comprehensive coverage of all types of buildings.
  2. Define national energy efficiency target, which is to be based on primary (or final) energy consumption, primary (or final) energy savings, or on energy intensity.
  3. Continue strengthening requirements for insulation, ventilation and technical installations.
    1. Give more attention to airtightness of building envelope
    2. Ensure building codes include requirements for air conditioning, lighting, use of renewable energy sources, and natural lighting
    3. Make mandatory requirement for inspection of boilers and air-conditioning systems to improve quality and precision of energy performance certification in multi-family buildings
    4. Follow holistic approach in building energy codes based on building energy performance requirements (heat, ventilation, air conditioning, lighting, etc.)
  4. Introduce or strengthen quality assurance measures, especially during the early stage of energy performance certification.
    1. Requirements for certifying experts should be harmonised
    2. Certifier needs to be physically present on-site
    3. Quality check procedure of energy performance certification should be harmonised
    4. Development of centralised energy performance certification databases and digitalisation of certification process
  5. Challenges of infrastructure energy performance data collection on energy use and the existing gaps should be priority areas for research.
  6. Establish or strengthen proper electronic monitoring system of compliance, enforcement and quality control processes to ensure compliance with international building energy codes and standards.
  7. Define measures to ensure that materials and products used in construction are subject to rigorous quality control to meet energy efficiency requirements, to maintain resistance of buildings to local environmental loads, and to ensure they do not threaten safety of people and property.

Government Initiatives

  • European Green Deal: In October 2020, the Commission presented its renovation wave strategy, as part of the European Green Deal. The strategy contains an action plan with concrete regulatory, financing and enabling measures to boost building renovation. Its objective is to at least double the annual energy renovation rate of buildings by 2030 and to foster deep renovation.
  • Energy Efficiency Obligation Scheme: Created as a result of the EE Directive, these schemes require energy companies to achieve energy savings at the level of 1.5% of their annual energy sales to final consumers by implementing energy efficiency measures. Alternatively, countries may introduce other policy measures to stimulate energy savings. EEOSs target energy suppliers, retailers and distributors as these groups are best placed to identify and carry out energy savings with their customers.
  • Energy Performance Certificates: Energy performance certificates provide information to consumers on buildings they plan to purchase or rent. They include an energy performance rating and recommendations for cost-effective improvements of the energy performance of a building or building unit.

Cost Structure

Local authorities may be tempted to opt for energy-efficiency projects with short paybacks. However, this approach will not capture the majority of potential savings available through energy retrofits. Instead, it is recommended that all profitable options are included and especially those that yield a rate of return higher than the interest rate of the investment capital. This approach will translate into greater savings over the long term. Too often, quick paybacks on investments mean that organisations do not pay attention to "lifecycle costing". Life cycle cost is the total cost of ownership over the life of an energy saving system, such as planning, design, construction and acquisition, operations, maintenance, renewal and rehabilitation, depreciation and cost of finance and replacement or disposal. Payback time should be compared with the lifespan of the goods to be financed. For instance, a 15-year payback time should not be considered as a long period of time when it comes to building with a lifespan of 50-60 years.

Regulations

Data and Standards

  • LEED – Leadership in energy and Environmental Design
  • BREEAM – Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method
  • German Energy Saving Ordinance - EnEV

The creation of this Solution has been supported by EU funding

Use Cases

Demand Side Response (DSR) Control for Student Accomodation

The use case aims to deliver strategic load curtailment in student accomodations via existing BEMS.

Demand Side Response Control for Public buildings

The Use case aims at delivering strategic load curtailment in public buildings via existing BEMS.

Energy efficient refurbishment of a residential building - Brf Årstakrönet

Under the GrowSmarter project, this measure focusses on energy efficient refurbishment of a residential building from 2007: Brf Årstakrönet, with 56 private condominiums.

Smart building shell refurbishment in Cologne

To improve energy efficiency of existing residential buildings by 70% as part of EU Horizon 2020 GrowSmarter Project, renovation measures were undertaken. This includes building envelope insulation, high efficient windows, staircase lighting, elevator and heating system.

Energy efficient refurbishment of the building - Educative centre Escola Sert

Gas Natural Fenosa has implemented energy refurbishment of an Educative center Escola Sert. The aim is to validate the technical and economic feasibility of adding renewable energy generation to a tertiary building in the form of building integrated photovoltaics (BIPVs) for self-consumption.

Waste heat recovery from sewage water

The projects entails the installation of a heat exchanger and water-to-water heat pumps that will recover the heat from sewage water in order to improve the efficiency of gas fired heaters in schools

Reusing EV Batteries for Energy Storage

Solutions for re-purposing EVs' rather quickly deteriorating but valuable batteries. EV taxis of the private company OU Takso in Tartu will be partially recharged based on renewable energy that is produced on-site with PV panels and stored in used EV batteries improving the yield of the batteries.

Energy storage assets

Energy storage system with Li-Ion batteries which provides bi-directional flexibility. It is aimed for dynamic cycling.

Smart meter information analysis and actuators

In Barcelona, Endesa deployed an innovative “Data Hub”, named Multiservice Concentrator (MSC), allocated in the secondary substation with the aim to serve as a data node, collecting and managing city data.

Stand alone Smart Street Lighting in Stockholm

Under the Smart Lighting measure of the Grow Smarter project, the goal is to demonstrate and test three different technologies for smart street lighting: remote, self-controlled and sensor-controlled LED lighting. In this Use Case the focus is on a stand alone system

Smart Street Lighting in Tartu

The City of Tartu replaced 320 existing sodium lights in the city centre area of Tartu with energy efficient LED lighting. The new lighting and the  traffic and environmental sensors together with the wireless control units developed by Cityntel OU form a smart street lighting network.

Intelligent Street Lighting

This project is a key part of Aberdeen's digital transformation. The City COuncil has invested in a £9.7 million seven-year rolling programme of replacing the old inefficient and expensive street lighting with more efficient and cost-effective LED lighting.

Related Solutions

Building Energy Management System

According to the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), buildings are responsible for approximately 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions in the EU.

Local Energy System

Approximately one-quarter of the energy price is owed by the transportation of the energy. The implementation of a local energy system can shift the energy production from a centralised system to a decentralised system.

Smart Microgrids

Microgrids are emerging as an attractive, viable solution for cities, utilities, and firms to meet the energy needs of communities by leveraging more sustainable resources, while increasing resilience, reducing emissions, and achieving broader policy or corporate goals.

Energy Storage Systems

Energy storage systems are used to store energy that is currently available but not needed, for later use. The goal is to create a reliable and environmentally friendly system. As the share of renewables increases, so does the need for storage. With storage, energy can be used when it is needed.

Bi-directional Electric Vehicle Charging

Bidirectional electric vehicle charging refers to EV chargers that allow not only for charging the battery of the EV but also for taking energy from the car battery and pushing it back to the grid when needed.

Energy Efficient Retrofitting of Buildings

Improving energy efficiency of the building stock in a city needs strategic and long-term thinking. Complex ownership structures, market barriers, diversity of building typologies, consumer preferences and multiple stakeholders involved makes energy efficient retrofitting a big challenge.

District Heating & Cooling Systems

State-of-the-art district heating and cooling systems are paving the way for municipalities to reduce overall carbon emissions and to speed up the energy transition through the efficient distribution of heat and cold from renewable energy sources.

Peer to Peer Energy Trading

Peer-to-peer (P2P) energy trading creates an online marketplace where energy can be traded with low barriers. This makes local renewable energy more accessible.

Virtual Power Plant

VPPs are a response to the growing number of distributed energy resources (DER) making their way onto the grid, as VPPs allow their production to be pooled to achieve the flexibility and scale needed to trade in the electricity market; unleashing gains for prosumers, aggregators, and grid operators.

Smart Home System

The majority of public funding for energy efficiency within the EU is proposed in the building sector. The federal funds for energy efficiency in residential buildings added up to €97 million in 2019. A Smart Home System is one possibility to improve residential energy efficiency.

Smart Lighting

Smart streetlights enable the reduction of running expenses associated with public lighting by delivering several value-added services to cities and citizens.

Public Charging System for Electric Vehicles

The current EU regulation on emissions for cars is the strictest worldwide. Along with further restrictions the thresholds cannot be meet with conventional cars only anymore. One alternative technology, reducing the local emissions, are electric vehicles.