Briefing: potential of energy saving partnerships in the UK: an example of Berlin

There is significant potential for improving the energy efficiency of the UK’s public building stock. This will require, however, significant financial investment by local and national government, which in the current economic climate is very difficult. One way to reduce the energy consumption of public buildings without direct up-front financing is by way of an energy saving partnership (ESP), two examples of which are outlined and compared here: the Berlin Energy Saving Partnership and the London Re:fit programme. Based on these examples and on discussions with UK building retrofit specialists, this paper analyses drivers and barriers for the potential of ESPs in the UK. It emphasises that in order to minimise or prevent potential financial obstacles, strong support, and not just financial support, from local government is required.