Green certification scheme gets support for expansion

A green certification project aimed at standardising how building projects are measured and developed to accelerate investment opportunities has received backing from the Horizon 2020 Programme to expand the standard to district energy and street lighting in Europe.

The Investor Confidence Project (ICP) Europe has expanded its Investor Ready Energy Efficiency (IREE) certification for energy-efficiency projects across, industry, street lighting and district energy applications, having previously only available to the building sector.

The ICP aims to promote best practice for projects to make them more attractive and easily measurable for the investor community.

The Green Business Certification Inc (GBCI), sister organisation of the US Green Building Council, partnered with the Environmental Defence Fund (EDF) to deliver the Investor Confidence Project (ICP) in 2011, before bringing the concept to Europe in 2015.

ICP has already trialled successful projects in Europe, such as the Liverpool NHS, and seeks to boost investor confidence on the financial and environmental performance of projects. A standardised roadmap assesses project risk to increase the reliability of projected energy savings through IREE, with the certification able to reduce overhead costs as a result, bringing more retrofit projects to the market.

ICP Europe’s senior advisor, Steve Fawkes, explains: “Since 2015, with the support of the European Commission, ICP has made great progress in introducing standardisation to building energy efficiency projects in Europe.

“With additional support from the European Commission we look forward to extending the principles of ICP into industrial, street lighting and district energy projects.”

The expansion of the ICP will be handled by the project’s European Consortium, which includes companies involved in efficiency projects and standards like UK furniture company Verco, the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmarks (GRESB) and the ESG benchmark for real assets.

These organisations will act as the communication between the project and the European investment market. The consortium will attempt to develop new protocols for additional sectors, using best practice examples to mobilise interest.

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