Manufacturing Sustainability: Green Manufacturing News

Europe Launches Energy Efficiency Funding Tool

posted by William R. Stott
Published: February 22, 2016

Image Courtesy Freeman-Woolpert

The European Commission is providing €1.7 million to Joule Assets Europe to develop the SEAF Tool, which will improve access to funding for energy efficiency projects, spurring job creation and the growth of small- and medium-sized service providers.

Joule Assets Europe successfully hosted the kick-off meeting for its newest project, the Sustainable Energy Asset Evaluation and Optimisation Framework (SEAF) February 3rd and 4th. The €1.7 million SEAF project is funded by the European Commission's Horizon 2020, the biggest EU Research and Innovation program. Joule Assets' SEAF project aims to enable small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by providing energy efficiency and other energy-related services to gain access to project finance. This will be done through a software platform that enables independent project valuation, insurance and design standardization. The overall objective of the SEAF tool is to support millions in energy efficiency investments for European SMEs, job growth and increased energy and CO2 savings.

Jessica Stromback, Chairman of Joule Assets, Europe states, "With over €8 billion of viable energy efficiency projects left undone in Europe, we are truly excited to develop this platform to support market development by lowering barriers to project finance. We look forward to supporting SME contractors and other small enterprises to reach their potential, for energy efficiency, job creation and healthier working environments."

Dave Worthington, Managing Director of Verco says, "We're excited to be working on the SEAF tool. Verco's involvement in the Investor Confidence Project (ICP) Europe complements this effort, and shows the European Commission's commitment to scaling up the market for energy efficiency retrofit across Europe."

Paul Cullum, Product Development Manager at HSB Engineering Insurance commented, "This is a great opportunity to bring energy efficiency projects and investors together. By providing access to asset performance insurances, we will be looking to enhance the credit worthiness of projects and improve investor confidence."

Led by Joule Assets Europe AB, SEAF gathers together expertise from the University of Manchester, the insurance company HSB Engineering Insurance Limited, and Verco from the UK, the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece, and Servizi Energia Ambiente S.r.l (SEASRL) from Aquila, Italy. The kick-off meeting included presentations from each member as well as a presentation on best practices for H2020 projects from Björn Zapfel of EASME (the European Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises).