Common practice

In recent years many countries have successfully used EU funds for municipal investments in various EE financing activities and projects. The last EU financial perspective 2014-2020 puts great emphasis on implementing and financing various climate change mitigation and environmental protection measures and energy efficiency investments are also linked to this. The states are using cohesion and regional development funds to EE investments through the ministries, agencies, various funds and banks.

Larger municipalities systematically benefit from such funds as they have strategic documents for co-financing EE investment available based on their middle or long-term plans. Smaller municipalities, however, face a lack of information, lack of awareness and other barriers. Therefore, on the state and regional level a mechanisms to connect smaller users in terms of education, awareness-raising and financing of energy efficiency should be established.

In many cases, investment decisions focus firstly on the technical planning and feasibility of the project. When it comes to financing, we often think very traditionally - can we finance the project from our own resources, do we get subsidies, how much credit do we need, at what conditions do we get this?

Self-financing, and eventually debt-financing, are standard options when manageable measures and costs are planned. Implementation takes place after technical planning, tendering and investment decision. After the implementation, the investor himself is responsible for the success of the savings, he must check whether the plans are well adjusted and whether the savings are also achieved.

Generally, municipalities rely to a great extent to existing sources from EU funds which is the logical way of EE financing when such funds are available. However, to lower the dependence on this way of financing and decrease the threat of not achieving these grants in the future it would be advisable to consider more diverse ways of EE financing in newly developed strategies and financial roadmaps.