The new Work Programme (2018-2020) of Horizon 2020 (H2020) Societal Challenge SC3: ‘Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy’ was published on 31st October 2017. This work programme contains the focus area of ‘Building a Low-Carbon, Climate Resilient Future: Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy’ (H2020-LC-SC3-2018-2019-2020)’ and is structured with several priorities covering: energy efficiency, renewable energy, smart and clean energy for consumers, energy systems, smart cities and communities, transforming the energy sector through digitalisation, nearly zero CO2 emissions from fossil fuels, and the joint actions and cross-cutting issues.

There are a number of funding opportunities (call topics) with direct relevance to Energy Efficient Buildings throughout the different priorities of the SC3 call, and in this article we provide a concise overview of the specific challenges, the most important dates and available budget for 2018.

Within the Energy Efficiency priority of the SC3 call there are several call topics (LC-SC3-EE) focusing on the challenges of upgrading buildings’ energy performance and smartness.

Namely, the call topic LC-SC3-EE-1-2018-2019-2020: “Decarbonisation of the EU building stock: innovative approaches and affordable solutions changing the market for buildings renovation” is aimed at tackling the specific challenge of transforming the market for deep renovation of buildings in terms of technologies, processes and business models. This call topic (Innovation Action, contribution from the EU of between EUR 3 and 4 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 9Mil EUR budget for 2018.

The call topic LC-SC3-EE-2-2018-2019: “Integrated home renovation services” is focusing on the challenge of the lack in skills and capacity to set up, finance and implement ambitious low-energy and clean-energy building renovation projects. The ‘integration’ aspect is seen in solutions covering the whole ‘customer journey’. Note for attention for proposals is to build upon the promising experiences of integrated renovation services emerging in Europe. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action, contribution from the EU of between EUR 0.5 and 1.5 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 7Mil EUR budget for 2018.

The call topic LC-SC3-EE-5-2018-2019-2020: “Next-generation of Energy Performance Assessment and Certification” is aimed at tackling the number of challenges of the current practices and tools of energy performance assessment and certification applied across Europe, to make them more reliable, user friendly, cost-effective and be of good quality and be compliant with EU legislation. This is all contributing to increasing the trust in the market of and stimulate investment in energy efficient buildings. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 2 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 5Mil EUR budget for 2018.

Furthermore, the work programme has several call topics focusing on the challenge on financing energy efficiency in buildings, in particular the LC-SC3-EE-9-2018-2019: “Innovative financing for energy efficiency investments” with the specific challenge to set up innovative financing schemes at regional or national level in order to create the conditions for adequate supply of private finance for energy efficiency investments, in line with the ‘Smart Finance for Smart Buildings’ initiative. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action, contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 1.5 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 6Mil EUR budget for 2018.

With the call topic LC-SC3-EE-10-2018-2019-2020: “Mainstreaming energy efficiency finance proposals are invited to tackle the specific challenge in making energy efficiency as an attractive investment by the financial sector. Interestingly, the challenge acknowledges that although the energy efficiency investments are usually expected to be paid back exclusively through the reduction of the energy bill, there is increasing evidence that non-energy benefits play a key role in the decision to invest in energy efficiency. It is the later that is specifically asked to be integrated in the project proposals. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 1.5 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 6Mil EUR budget for 2018.

Furthermore, the call topic LC-SC3-EE-11-2018-2019-2020: “Aggregation – Project Development Assistance” tackles the challenge of investors and lenders gaining more confidence on investment projects related to energy efficiency (including buildings) which are still seen as risky and fragmented. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 0.5 and 1.5 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date 4th September 2018 and 7Mil EUR budget for 2018.

Within the Global Leadership in Renewables priority of the SC3 call there are several call topics (LC-SC3-RES) focusing on the challenges of creating an EU industrial renewable energy sector which is economically sustainable and competitive in European and global markets in the long-term.

In terms of funding opportunities call topics with direct relevant to buildings, we emphasise the following call topics:

LC-SC3-RES-4-2018: “Renewable energy system integrated at the building scale” with its specific challenge for developing solutions that integrate several technologies based on more renewable energy achieving the highest possible share of renewable energy, taking into consideration the cost-effectiveness and implications for the user. Priority is given to cover the highest possible share of electricity, heating and cooling needs of multi-family residential, commercial, public or industrial buildings based on combination of different renewable energy technologies. This call topic (Research and Innovation Action), contribution from the EU of between EUR 2 and 5 million), is opened since 31st October 2017 with closing date 31th January 2018 (First Stage), 23rd August 2018 (Second Stage) and 27.5Mil EUR budget for 2018.

LC-SC3-RES-5-2018: “Increased performance of technologies for local heating and cooling solutions” with a specific challenge for uptake of solutions to make existing technologies for heating and cooling in residential and commercial buildings more performant and therefore more cost-efficient and attractive for the market, and is in line with the objectives of the “Affordable Heating and Cooling of Buildings” of Mission Innovation and the roadmap of the Energy-efficient Buildings (EeB) cPPP. This call topic (Innovation Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 3 and 10 million), is currently opened since 31st October 2017 with closing date on 13th February 2018 and 10Mil EUR budget for 2018.

Another interesting call topic directly relevant to buildings is LC-SC3-RES-6-2018: “Demonstrate significant cost reduction for Building Integrated PV (BIPV) solutions” having a specific challenge for the BIPV need to satisfy multiple building functions such as: mechanical rigidity and structural integrity; primary weather impact protection including rain, snow, wind, etc.; energy economy, such as shading, daylighting, thermal insulation; fire protection, noise protection, in addition to architectural and aesthetic considerations, so as to replace roofs, facades and shading devices. At the same time, a control system for building management functions, grid-feeding, self-consumption and local storage needs to be considered. This call topic (Innovation Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 6 and 10 million), is currently opened since 31st October 2017 with closing date on 13th February 2018 and 30Mil EUR budget for 2018.

The Smart and clean energy for consumers priority there are call topics (LC-SC3-EC) relating to buildings through developing better understanding of the drivers of consumer acceptance and behaviour change in relation to energy efficiency and how they use buildings. We emphasise the call topic LC-SC3-EC-2-2018-2019-2020: “Mitigating household energy poverty where the challenge is to significantly reduce the energy poverty still affecting the quality of life of a significant number of European citizens through better information, building retrofit, low cost measures and the use of renewable energy. This call topic (Coordination and Support Action, contribution from the EU of between EUR 1 and 2 million), will open on 25th January 2018 with closing date on 4th September 2018 and 5Mil EUR budget for 2018.

Finally, the Smart Cities and Communities priority of the call with the call topic LC-SC3-SCC-1-2018-2019-2020: “Smart Cities and Communities” with its specific challenge to achieve the necessary energy transition in cities by increasing the energy systems integration, pushing the energy performance levels significantly beyond the levels of current EU building codes and realizing Europe wide deployment of Positive Energy Districts by 2050. This call topic (Innovation Action in 2018, contribution from the EU of between EUR 15 and 20 million), will open on 5th December 2017 with closing date on 5th April 2018 and 43Mil EUR budget for 2019.

How can XLNCE Consultancy Help?

XLNCE Consultancy combines services in Horizon 2020 – Energy call project development with expertise in energy efficient buildings. Do you have a project idea that aims at tackling the challenges of relevance to energy efficient buildings and want to further develop it with Horizon 2020 – Energy funding? XLNCE Consultancy has an extensive experience with writing grant applications, wide EU network to help you build a strong consortium, coordinate your proposal preparation effort and review/evaluate the application prior to submission deadline providing you with recommendations for improvements.