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Horizon 2020 save@work project supports public sector employees in reducing their energy consumption
Horizon 2020 save@work project supports public sector employees in reducing their energy consumption
14 luglio 2017 - 17:03

The recently ended Horizon 2020 save@work project successfully encouraged public sector employees in cities to decrease their energy consumption in their work places.

The save@work project (2015-2017) engaged 17,000 employees in 176 public sector buildings in 8 EU Member States over its lifetime. The approach was straightforward: each building had its own "energy team", a group of individuals chosen among the employees, who were then trained by the project to carry out a simplified energy audit of their building. For this purpose, save@work created an intuitive energy saving tool through which the participating public sector employees could monitor the energy savings of their building over time.

Furthermore, the save@work project provided engagement tools to the involved public sector employees, so that these could inform and motivate their colleagues to reduce their energy use with simple means, like e.g. turning off stand-by mode on their computers or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. From 2016 till 2017, the project then launched a year-long competition among the participating public sector buildings, to see which energy team of employees could reduce the most the energy consumption of their building.

For each of the 8 Member States, one winning team was selected. On average, the winning teams managed to save between 10 - 25% of their average yearly energy consumption, thereby making significant impacts on both the carbon emissions and operational costs of their buildings. Collectively, the participating employees of the 176 public sector buildings could save 4000 MWh, reduce emissions by 1,800 tons CO2 and achieve savings worth half a million Euros.

Several of the winning teams came from Covenant of Mayors cities - among them employees of the town hall of Zemst (Belgium), Smiltenes municipal council (Latvia), Campogalliano municipality (Italy) and the district court in Berlin (Germany). The employees of the town hall of Zemst cut their energy consumption in merely one year by an impressive 25%, the highest number among all winning teams!

At the save@work final event during the EU Sustainable Energy Week in Brussels in June 2017, the 8 winning teams were awarded certificates by Vincent Berrutto, the head of the energy unit of the EU's Executive Agency for Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME). Berrutto congratulated the winning teams on their energy saving achievements and said: "The public sector has a key role to play in the achievement of the EU's 2030 climate and energy targets. Projects like save@work not only bring economic and environmental benefits, but also positive interactions between employees".

  • Find here more information about the save@work project
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