The City of Berlin in partnership with Berlin Energy Agency (BEA) has pioneered an excellent model for improving energy efficiency in buildings. They project mange the retrofit of public and private buildings, preparing tenders for work that will guarantee reductions in emissions.

CO2 reductions of on average of 26% - are written into the public retrofit tenders so that winning Energy Systems Companies ESCOs must deliver sustainable energy solutions. 1,400 buildings have so far been upgraded, delivering CO2 reductions of more than 60,400 tonnes per year � these retrofits cost the building owners nothing � and the buildings make immediate savings.

BEA is a leading energy consultancy � partly owned by the government of Berlin. It organises retrofits for large government and commercial buildings, by setting up special contracts between the building owners and Energy Systems Companies ESCOs. ESCOs that apply for the retrofit tenders must agree to make energy efficiencies of around 24%. They do this by installing hardware such as heating control systems, lights, insulation etc. The annual energy efficiencies of 24% then fund the cost of the retrofit.

BEA helps building owners and ESCOs decide how the money will be paid back to the ESCO. Average payback periods are 8 to 12 years. BEA's energy partnerships are highly successful � because they cost the building owner zero, and deliver savings immediately. BEA are successfully extending this program to other countries. Approach Energy Savings Partnerships have been working successfully for over ten years.

Their program depends on the efficient interaction of all key players.

�The City of Berlin through the Senate Administration for Urban Development initiates the Energy Saving Partnerships between building owners � typically various Berlin district administrations � and ESCOs.

�Berlin Energy Agency then acts as the independent project manager, moderating and managing the process from baseline to contract negotiation.

�Building owners agree to establish a tender process for retrofitting their building to cut back on energy consumption. �Typically BEA will bring together a number of buildings � from 4 to as many as 400, these pools then issue retrofit tenders.

�To take part in the Energy Savings Partnerships, buildings need to have a minimum energy bill of around �200,000 annually.

�ESCOs that tender for the work � such as Siemans, Honeywell, etc - use sustainable technologies and systems, such as insulation, CHP, lighting, self-ballasted lamps, heating control systems, energy consumption regulators, insulation, to reduce energy consumption in the building.

�Key measures for Energy Performance Contracting do not usually include window replacement or wall insulation because the payback from achieved savings would be too long.

�The winning ESCOs must guarantee energy savings using innovation, state-of-the�art technology, ideas and value for money.

�The ESCO pays for the retrofit upfront and building owners pay them back over an agreed period � usually 8 to 12 years in annual instalments from the energy savings.

Typically around 97% of the annual savings are paid to the ESCO in the first few years. Once the contract is completed, the building owner realises the full energy saving.

�This means that, remarkably and simply, the building owner pays not a cent towards the retrofit, but in fact makes savings from day one.

�Customers pay only 50% of the costs for Berlin Senate Administration services. So far, ESCOs have invested �43,125,882 in lightfiittings, energy control system, insulation etc in 1,400 buildings.

These buildings have made total guaranteed savings of �10,164,848 or 24% of the their energy bills.