About Energy Efficiency

Aquila Energy Efficiency Trust focusses on investments in small to medium sized energy efficiency projects in the private and public sector. By definition, energy efficiency refers to measures whose implementation results in the same or better performance with less energy consumption. According to the laws of economics, scarcity of energy makes it necessary to relate the input to the output in order to maximize the respective benefit. This means that with a fixed energy input the maximum output is aimed at, or with a fixed output the energy input is minimized. 

An illustrative example of this is the use of energy-saving lamps, which is now mandatory. Whereas conventional incandescent lamps convert electrical energy into desired lighting and undesired heat, the energy requirement for efficient light sources is reduced due to lower heat losses for the same lighting.

In addition to the essential expansion of renewable energies, increasing energy efficiency is one of the most important prerequisites for achieving climate targets after all. However, the topic as such is hardly visible and its implementation is still limited - despite significant cost advantages and despite possible synergy effects in interaction with renewable energy. To enhance efforts in this area, it is essential to increase visibility and priority.

According to a study by IRENA, 90% of the required CO2 reductions to limit global warming to the 2°C target could be achieved by the increased use of renewable energies and an expansion of energy efficiency.

However, the topic is not entirely new: as early as 2016, the energy ministers of the G7 reaffirmed that energy efficiency is the key to decarbonizing the economies and should therefore be considered as "first fuel".  First fuel in this context means that efficiency measures reduce energy consumption and these savings can be used elsewhere.

„The cleanest energy is that which is not consumed at all.

(Brigitte Zypries, German Federal Minister of Economics and Energy until 2018)

The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that - in addition to planned emission reductions - half of the global CO2 reduction can be achieved cost-effectively through efficiency measures. Related to Europe this potential amounts to 76%.

Under current conditions, the industry in Europe has a cost-efficient savings potential of 20 to 40 percent of primary energy. Cost-efficient means: short amortization periods or immediate cost savings when outsourcing (contracting) the implementation of measures. A corresponding reduction in energy costs thus leads to competitive advantages.

Energy Efficiency – The First Fuel

Find out why energy efficiency should be considered as “first fuel”. Robert Hundeshagen, Investment Manager at Aquila Capital, explains why energy efficiency investments play a vital role in the energy transition and truly deliver an impact from a return perspective as well as by addressing key UN Sustainable Development Goals.