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  • Periodic Reporting for period 1 - EU-MERCI (EU-MERCI - EU coordinated MEthods and procedures based on Real Cases for the effective implementation of policies and measures supporting energy efficiency in the Industry)

EU-MERCI Report Summary

Project ID: 693845
Funded under: H2020-EU.3.3.7.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - EU-MERCI (EU-MERCI - EU coordinated MEthods and procedures based on Real Cases for the effective implementation of policies and measures supporting energy efficiency in the Industry)

Reporting period: 2016-02-01 to 2017-01-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

The final energy consumption of industry in Europe accounts for 25% of the total, with a greenhouse gas emission of 20% of the total (Eurostat), but the 60% of the potential for energy efficiency improvement is still largely unexploited (IEA). This is particularly true for SMEs, which are the backbone of the European economy and account for 30% of the energy savings potential. In this context, the reduction of energy consumption in the industrial sector plays a crucial role in EE programs and policies, as it is stated in the EU 2012/27 Directive.
In spite of this, a comprehensive sharing of harmonized policies and implementation guidelines cannot be found at the EU level.
EU-MERCI aims at filling this gap, by proposing and making available online a series of efficiency “Good practices”, validated in-field, and assisting industries to effectively put into practice and monitor sustainable energy efficiency improvements in their processes, in application of the obligation schemes and/or alternative measures adopted in the respective MS.
EU-MERCI also has the goal to support the action of the decision makers aimed at creating new effective EE supporting schemes and to improve existing ones, in order to make them more effective, transparent and responsive to the real needs of the industrial end-users.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

The first work package (WP1) has the goal to carry out a comparative analysis of EEOSs and alternative measures in the different MS (EU28+Norway): the results have shown substantial differences among the identified 71 key measures as regards the methodology for energy savings calculations, monitoring and reporting, thus clearly showing the lack of a common EU approach to EE measures.
This top-down analysis has been complemented by a bottom-up approach, which consisted in a survey aimed at monitoring market perception of barriers and benefits associated to the implementation of EE measures in industry in the MS. A total of 150 replies from 9 countries were gathered, indicating that the vast majority of the industries (78%) aim to reduce their energy consumption by implementing only the most basic EE measures, in contrast with the approach of EU-MERCI, which tries to take into account more complex (and effective) EE measures. The most important barriers have resulted to be the excessive length of the payback timing, the difficult access to subsidies and the mistrust of bureaucracy.
The second work package (WP2) has the goal to implement the EU-MERCI Database in which the available information can be organised and made ready for the following analysis and elaborations - in particular the extraction of “Good practices” - and, ultimately, for the free access by external users. The database is composed by a Repository, already operative, containing the Enablers’ national data sets with associated KPIs, and a Library, containing reports describing the selected “Good Practices”.
In the third work package (WP3), the activities were focused on the inventory of the existing data sets and on the analysis and extraction of data and information related to EE projects really implemented in the industry. The main result, so far, is the identification of a common set of harmonized information suitable to describe an EE intervention and the building of sector-specific taxonomies addressing the single phases of each process: this approach allowed to overcome the hamper of the diversity of the national data converting them into a logic appropriate for the EU-MERCI analysis.
The fourth work package (WP4) has the goal to extract “Good practices” from the existing data sets of implemented EE projects. The definition of “Good Practice”, according to EU-MERCI, entails efficiency and economic sustainability concepts, as well other factors impacting the concerned process, the industry sector and the energy system. A number of KPIs, appropriate to classify and select Good Practices according to those principles and based on in-field data have been defined. Country statistical analyses were carried out to support their computation, providing a complete picture of the efficiency trends and needs at EU level.
The fifth work package (WP5) has the goal to validate – by direct assessment of the concerned stakeholders - the “Good Practices” proposed by EU-MERCI and to estimate their possible impact against a series of elaborated scenarios of policies and related implementation mechanisms. Preliminary actions have been done to define the approach and to identify reference scenarios, basing on the policy analysis developed in WP1 and on a number of appropriate KPIs measuring the suitability of the policies to attain country specific EE goals by exploiting EU-MERCI solutions.
Dissemination and exploitation is the goal of the sixth work package (WP6). During the first year of the project, besides the preparation of dissemination material and tools (e.g. the website), the activities focused on the Stakeholders Engagement and Capacity Building actions and to the creation of the EU-MERCI Stakeholder Community. The role of such a Community is crucial, as its members will both validate the obtained results and benefit of the transfer of the EU-MERCI outputs. In this respect, strategies have been developed in order to attract the stakeholders to

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

EU-MERCI incorporates several innovative elements that go beyond the state-of-the-art from a technological and energy perspective.
Definition of “Good practices”: many of the current recommendations for the improvement of EE in industries are based on standardized and theoretical (often outdated) studies. On the opposite, the approach of EU-MERCI addresses the EE issue by investigating real implemented EE projects to extract and propose a series of validated “Good practices”, whose efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability is quantitatively measured by technical, economic, environmental and social related key performance indicators.
Bottom-up approach through questionnaires: EU-MERCI has implemented a survey aiming to collect the point of view of the stakeholders at the EU level about barriers and benefits associated to the implementation of EE measures in industry in the MS.
Engagement campaigns. As there is a considerable diversity of stakeholders, EU-MERCI has carefully analysed their characteristics and classified them according to their possible role in the project on the basis of the IN-IN (INfluence–INterest) matrix, a methodology which can be applied to other fields too.
The homogenization process and taxonomy development: in fact, the diversity of the way in which data about EE interventions in industry are collected and stored on a national scale have shown the difficulty to make a comparative analysis. The work done by EU-MERCI allows the integration of data from any sources, identifying the data necessary to provide a linear but comprehensive picture of any EE project.
Identification of the KPIs necessary to quantify the benefits coming from EE projects and suitably ranking them: as the comparison among data from different sources is difficult, EU-MERCI has planned a quantitative approach based on the calculation of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) which allow the quantification of the most important technical parameters complemented by socio-economic indexes.

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