ECM - Energy Conservation Measure

An ECM is any type of technology implemented to improve the energy efficiency of a building, including heating, cooling, ventilation systems, utility systems, roof, and windows. This is achieved by an engineering investigation to identify potential replacements of, or upgrades to, existing systems that enhance energy efficiency in a cost-effective manner.

Energy Audit

A systematic procedure to obtain adequate knowledge of the existing energy consumption profile of a building or group of buildings, of an industrial operation and/or installation or of a private or public service, identify and quantify cost effective energy savings opportunities, and report the findings.

Source: Directive on Energy End-use Efficiency and Energy Services, the European Parliament and the Council (April 2006) Article 3: Definitions



Energy efficiency

Energy efficiency improvements refer to a reduction in the energy used for a given service (heating, lighting, etc.) or level of activity. The reduction in the energy consumption is usually associated with technological changes, but not always since it can also result from better organisation and management or improved economic conditions in the sector (“non-technical factors”).


Energy Performance Certificate

An energy Performance Certificate is a certificate recognised by the Member State, or a legal person designated by it, which includes the energy performance of a building calculated according to a methodology based on the general framework set out in the Annex of Directive 2002/91/EC [EPBD, 2002/91/EC]. Energy Performance Certificates must be accompanied by recommendations for costeffective improvement options to raise the performance and rating of the building.

Tags : Energy efficiency, Deep renovation


Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) is a form of ‘creative financing’ for capital improvement which allows funding energy upgrades from cost reductions. Under an EPC arrangement an external organisation (ESCO) implements a project to deliver energy efficiency, or a renewable energy project, and uses the stream of income from the cost savings, or the renewable energy produced, to repay the costs of the project, including the costs of the investment. Essentially the ESCO will not receive its payment unless the project delivers energy savings as expected.

The approach is based on the transfer of technical risks from the client to the ESCO based on performance guarantees given by the ESCO. In EPC ESCO remuneration is based on demonstrated performance; a measure of performance is the level of energy savings or energy service. EPC is a means to deliver infrastructure improvements to facilities that lack energy engineering skills, manpower or management time, capital funding, understanding of risk, or technology information. Cash-poor, yet creditworthy customers are therefore good potential clients for EPC. Figure 1 illustrates the concept.

Figure 1.  Energy Performance Contracting

Source: Berliner Energieagentur GmbH

EPC light

This is an EPC (Energy Performance Cntracting) where energy savings are mainly achieved through organizational measures with low or no investments in technical equipment. The ESCO (Energy Service Company) acts as external energy manager taking over the responsibility to operate and optimize the energy related installations.

EPC plus

This contracting model is an Energy Performance Contracting with comprehensive refurbishment extending the service of the ESCO (Energy Service Company) to comprehensive structural measures on the building shell like insulation or window replacement. These services are usually not part of the classical EPC because of too long pay-back periods.


European Regional Development Fund. An EU fund which is intended to help reduce imbalances between regions of the Community. The Fund was set up in 1975, and grants financial assistance for development projects in the poorer regions. In terms of financial resources, the ERDF is by far the largest of the EU’s Structural Funds. The main aim of the ERDF is to overcome the structural deficiencies of the poorer regions in order to overcome the gap between these regions and the richer ones.

ESC - Energy Supply Contracting

Energy Supply Contracting is the efficient supply of energy. The contracting partner provides products such as heat, chilling, compressed air or electricity. The subject of the contract is not the energy value, like for example liters of oil, but the utility value – billed in Euros per volume items of heat, steam or compressed air. Financing, engineering design, planning, constructing, operation and maintenance of energy production plants as well as management of energy distribution are often all included in the complete service package


An energy service company (ESCO) is a natural or legal person that delivers energy services and/or other energy efficiency improvement measures in a user’s facility or premises. The payment for the services delivered is based (either wholly or in part) on the achievement of energy efficiency improvements and on the meeting of the other agreed term of the contract [ESD, 2006/32/EC].



ESI Funds

The European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI Funds) operate under shared management between the Commission and the Member States. In the 2014‐2020 period, the term European Structural and Investment Funds refers to the following five funds:

1) European Regional Development Fund (ERDF),
2) European Social Fund (ESF),
3) Cohesion Fund (CF),
4) European Agricultural and Development Fund (EARDF),
5) European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF)


Tags : ERDF

ESPC - Energy Service Provider Company

Energy Service Provider Company is a company that offers energy services to final energy users, including the supply and installation of energy-efficient equipment, the supply of energy, and/or building refurbishment, maintenance and operation, facility management, and the supply of energy (including heat).

ESPCs provide a service for a fixed fee or as added value to the supply of equipment. ESPC may have some incentives to reduce consumption, but these are not as clear as in the ESCO approach. Often the full cost of energy services is recovered in the fee, so the ESPC does not assume any risk in case of underperformance. EPSC is paid a fee for their advice or equipment rather than being paid based on the results of their recommendations.