Energy Efficiency 

Implemented from October 2013 to August 2015, the Energy Efficiency in WSS Utilities Capacity-Building Program organized wholesale technical assistance and capacity building on energy efficiency (EE) to water and sanitation utilities in three targeted countries - Romania, the Serbian hub and Ukraine. The program included four phases. An initial workshop was held in April 2014 and two subsequent events were held in mid – July and October 2014.

The objective of Phase I was to develop a background document to evaluate and compare current approaches related to EE in WSS, and review potential financing mechanisms in the region and beyond. The objective of Phase II was to deliver the capacity building program designed in Phase I to achieve concrete action plans based on the results of the energy audit. It was implemented in close coordination with three national consultants and the water associations. There, the WB, supported by the Econoler team, selected 36 utilities through a call for interest advertised on the DWP website and via national water utility associations. The objective of Phase III was to provide further support to selected utilities in delivering an energy audit report and seeking suitable financing for the implementation their EE project. Out of the 20 utilities that reached Phase III, 18 submitted an energy audit report and seven were able to secure the financing of their EE projects, representing a total of EUR 2,362,920. The audits identified 22 M MWh/year in (largely electromechanical) savings, EUR 2.5M/year cost savings, EUR 6.2M in needed investments and payback periods of 2 – 5 years. Seven utilities could secure a total of EUR 2.3M in funding equaling 37% of the needed investments. In addition to submitting a final report documenting the project outcomes, the objective of the fourth phase was to prepare a final revised version of all relevant training material and tools for use in future such activities. To facilitate the replication and scaling-up of the initiative by national water utility associations, detailed lessons learned were also collected for each of the phases. Training material was developed and translated into Albanian, Bosnian, Bulgarian and Romanian and additionally a brochure on the program was produced and is being distributed among key stakeholders.

Overall, project outcomes were very positive, with utilities showing great interest and commitment in the program. Some of the lessons drawn from the program were to increase the number of training sessions and opportunities for practical applications, include more diverse stakeholders in the training sessions and make sure that the program addresses the financing challenges that many utilities face in their respective countries.