EE-08-2014 - Public procurement of innovative sustainable energy solutions
Specific challenge: Considering the large volume of public spending (19% of EU GDP, or roughly EUR 2,200 bn in 2009), the public sector constitute an important driver to stimulate market transformation towards more sustainable energy products, buildings and services. To this regard, the recent Energy Efficiency Directive requires for instance that central governments purchase only products, services and buildings with high energy-efficiency performance. However, there are many operational barriers related to sustainable energy public spending such as the lack of knowledge, practical training and tailored guidelines; the lack of willingness to change procurement habits; or perceived legal uncertainties.
· Proposals improving the capacity of public authorities and national/regional/local procurement authorities in purchasing best available sustainable energy products, buildings or services. Project proposals should address the lack of professional procurement training, the lack of experience in implementing sustainable procurement practices and strategies, and/or the lack of sharing and co-operation among procurers. They should where appropriate rely on the use of cost – benefit analysis (e.g. using a life-cycle approach). Actions should include sharing of best practices and involve large multipliers such as central purchasing organisations.
· Support public authorities in procuring fast-evolving information and communication technologies such as Green Data Centres. Project proposals should consider the risks associated to rapid technological evolution, a dynamic industry, scalability and the need for tailored (i.e. not off the shelf) solutions by suppliers. Activities to support networking of public procurers or the use of PPI (Public Procurement of Innovative solutions) or PCP (Pre-commercial Procurement) are to be included.
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 1.5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
Expected impact: Every million Euro of EU support is expected to trigger the launch of public tenders for the purchase of sustainable energy products, buildings or services resulting in savings of more than 25 GWh per year of energy savings and/or renewable energy production. Proposals should also increase the skills of public procurers and the market uptake of innovative solutions.
Type of action: Coordination and Support Actions
 COM staff working paper, Annexes to the impact assessment of Directive 2012/27/EU
 Based on results from previous IEE projects such as BUYSMART