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Financing energy efficiency in buildings: An international review of best practice and innovation Dr Sarah Royston, Association for the Conservation of.

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Presentation on theme: "Financing energy efficiency in buildings: An international review of best practice and innovation Dr Sarah Royston, Association for the Conservation of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Financing energy efficiency in buildings: An international review of best practice and innovation Dr Sarah Royston, Association for the Conservation of Energy ACE aims to reduce overall energy demand to ensure a secure and sustainable energy future.

2 The challenge Some key barriers to energy efficiency relate to financing: initial cost barrier high transaction costs long payback time split incentives risk, uncertainty and lack of knowledge among finance providers absence of standardised measurement and verification practice

3 Research objectives Analyse ways in which key barriers are successfully addressed, highlighting best practice and innovation Analyse contextual factors which affect the transferability of lessons Help decision-makers and practitioners to think through scheme design systematically Use a broad definition of energy efficiency in buildings

4 Types of scheme Soft loans On-bill repayment Guarantee programmes Property-assessed repayment Energy service company (ESCO) models

5 Overview of schemes

6 We identify a number of barriers to the success of energy efficiency finance schemes. These barriers fall into the following four broad categories: 1.Finance 2.Institutions, stakeholders and capacity 3.Buildings and measures 4.Consumers and end-users Overcoming barriers : best practice and innovation

7 1. Finance

8 Access and attractiveness of capital Many different approaches are used, including: Government subsidised interest rates (KfW, Germany) On-bill repayment (BELP, India) Microfinance group loans (Kenya) Loans linked to property (PACE, US) Mortgage extensions (Warm Up New Zealand)

9 Guarantees A closely related issue (which is often a root cause of high interest rates and fees for beneficiaries) is the wariness of investors and lenders about financing energy efficiency. In many of the cases studied, this had been a serious problem in the past, and had gradually been overcome through a range of measures. State backing can be used to reduce borrowing costs. E.g. KfW, Kredex, Japanese Flat 35

10 Minimising administrative costs Administrative costs affect interest rates and fees. E.g. Kredex: loans have lower administrative costs than previous grant-based schemes because most of the work is done by the partner banks (at lower cost per customer account) E.g PACE schemes: significant programme cost savings through aggregation or scaling up schemes (e.g. to the county level) due to administrative efficiencies and hedging.

11 Moving towards financial sustainability A scheme may succeed (especially in the short term) by drawing on the resources of the state or other funders. However, this is precarious. Sustainability can be promoted though a revolving approach (after an initial funding injection) or by accessing credit through financial markets. E.g. Kredex; Chinese ESCOs

12 2. Institutions, stakeholders and capacity

13 Overcoming legal hurdles These may include changes to planning rules, building codes, consumer protection frameworks, property law and rules on financial transactions and liabilities. E.g. Kenyas micro-finance sector is regulated by legislation, which now allows some micro-finance organisations to take deposits. This change, in 2009, has helped them become more financially secure. E.g. PACE schemes enabling laws and disputes

14 Engaging suitable partners Energy efficiency projects are often typified by a large number of stakeholders. Schemes may be more likely to succeed in reaching their target audiences if they have buy-in from a range of actors across the supply chain and wider society. E.g. BELP engaged utility, manufacturers and retailers E.g. Warm UP NZ engages councils, banks and NGOs

15 Engaging suitable partners E.g. In Kenyan microfinance, SACCOs and other local microfinance groups are involved, including small rural groups. E.g. In Estonias Kredex, apartment associations can apply for loans. Using these groups may help engage hard-to-reach customers.

16 Split incentives Split incentives refers to the situation in which the costs of measures are borne by one person and the benefits by another. This can relate to landlord/tenant issues and current/future owner issues. E.g. Any PAYS scheme faces the problem that a current property owner might invest in measures, but then move house before recouping the full benefit, and still be left making the repayments. For this reason, a Palm Desert PACE loan stays with the property.

17 Lack of knowledge and capacity This is problematic where energy efficiency is an emerging sector. E.g. a major obstacle in Kenya was lack of technical capacity within lending institutions The umbrella organisation KUSCCO received grants, technical assistance, and capacity building through external funders. This included help in developing guidelines on energy products and services, and formal procedures for capturing energy information.

18 Verification of energy savings of measures Some schemes specify a limited range of eligible measures, while others focus on the final level of efficiency achieved. For the latter category, verifying this energy saving is an important challenge. E.g. KfW (energy savings have to be verified by an approved energy assessor before funding can be drawn) E.g. Households applying for Flat 35 loans must submit certificates which certify the required standards have been met.

19 3. Measures and buildings

20 Which measures to use? There are two broad approaches to measures: Specified eligible measures (e.g. BELP, Warm Up NZ) Technology-neutral audit based approach (e.g. Flat 35) Or schemes can use a mixture of both (e.g. KfW) Each approach has pros and cons, in terms of costs, flexibility, energy savings and customer journey.

21 Which buildings to target? There are advantages in targeting a wide range of buildings. Helps maximise potential savings and distribute benefits widely Can hedge against risks of under-performance and default in individual sectors However, there may also be benefits in targeting a certain type of building, perhaps because a particular problem has been identified. E.g. Kredex focuses on apartments

22 Promoting deep retrofits Kredex has incentives for deeper savings; its apartment grants provide different levels of subsidy depending on the final energy class achieved. KfWs level of subsidy is linked to a series of levels of energy efficiency achieved. In Japanese Flat 35 special incentives were available for homes with the highest efficiency standards, in the past.

23 4. Consumers and end-users

24 Awareness and trust A key barrier is awareness of energy efficiency in general and of the scheme in particular, and negative perceptions of measures. E.g. Indias prevalence of poor quality CFLs - BESCOM hired a branding and marketing consulting agency to develop a plan. Trust was ensured through use of well-known brands and company involvement, as well as a warranty on products, and hologram quality mark.

25 Customer journey: complexity and hassle If target audiences are diverse, a range of financial offers may be needed. E.g. in Warm Up New Zealand, flexible payment options are provided by banks and councils, and subsidies are available to certain people. E.g. in Kenya, different institutions have provided different offers (i.e. interest rates and fees, loan duration, security needed).

26 Customer journey: complexity and hassle However, diverse offers may pose a challenge of over-complexity and customer confusion. Palm Desert PACE offers one simple, comprehensive financial plan applicable to many people. There is a balance to be struck between one-size-fits-all and over- complexity, which depends on the specific scheme and its context.

27 Customer journey: complexity and hassle Another issue is the process that end users have to go through to benefit from the offer. For Warm Up New Zealand, a well-designed website makes it easy for customers to see what help they will be eligible for, and to find registered providers in their area. In France, the government subsidised 0% interest Eco-Prêt loans scheme addresses hassle linked to whole-house retrofits by allowing two years for completion. Loans may also cover the cost of project management.

28 End-user audience diversity Unless schemes are carefully designed to engage vulnerable groups, they are likely to miss out on support. This is especially problematic where schemes involve debt, require property ownership, involve some up-front costs or require credit checks. Warm Up NZ includes a special subsidy for people with a community services card (specific vulnerable groups), which is also available to landlords with tenants in these groups.

29 Conclusions Prescriptive solutions are not possible, given the diverse contexts for energy efficiency financing worldwide. In the report, we draw recommendations relating to each of the barriers discussed here, taking account of these five elements of context. – Political, legal and institutional contexts – Social and demographic contexts – Economic and industrial contexts – Built environment – Climate and geography

30 Framework for buildings energy efficiency finance design Barrier Political/legal/instituti onal Social and demographic Economic and industrial Built environmentClimate and geography Finance Access and attractiveness Reducing costs Becoming self- sustaining Institutions / stakeholders Institutional/legal frameworks Engaging stakeholders Knowledge and capacity Measures and buildings Measures coverage Sector coverage Depth of retrofit Consumers and end- users Trust and quality Complexity and hassle Audience and marketing

31 Contact: Sarah Royston, Researcher +44 (0) Full report available at: energy-efficiency-in-buildings-an-international-review-of-best- practice-and-innovation/ energy-efficiency-in-buildings-an-international-review-of-best- practice-and-innovation/

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