Local Energy Saving: through the spending review of the communes savings up 615 m


LOCALES (Local Energy Saving) is the new project of “Research for parameterizing the spending for electric power of the communes by SIOPE codes including the estimate of the obtainable Saving” which aims to help the PA to implement the spending review of energy consumption. The service was launched on October 28 by Kyoto Club, with the financing of Cariplo Foundation and the methodological contribution of Roberto Gerbo, Eng. and it is based on the processing of data available in the Information System on the Operation of Public Entities (Sistema Informativo sulle Operazioni degli Enti Pubblici – SIOPE) of the State General Accounting Office.


“The project stems from the awareness of high energy consumption by local entities (250,000 inhabitants), mainly due to scarce the energy efficiency and need for saving – explains  Roberto Calabresi of Kyoto Club. The figures are official and come from financial statements that the communes send the State on monthly basis. These are thus confirmed data relating to the expenditure.” The entities that will ask for them, will have free access to information as our goal is to provide “a ready-made instrument that would allow for preliminary energy diagnostics, by checking own expenditure and comparing it with that of similar entities in terms of the number of inhabitants and climate,” with the aim of expanding it also to the Regions.

The total expenditure of the communes in 2014 was €3,262,990,695.10 and according to the benchmark targets determined in the course of study, the potential saving is estimated to amount to around €615 M a year, about €12 per inhabitant, of which €314 M in the ordinary communes and €301 M in the coastline/mountain ones.

The application of the quality targets on the statistical basis allows obtaining a preliminary screening of the diagnostics that compares homogeneous entities – in case of the coastline and mountain communes special values have been elaborated – and spot the communes that consume too much or too little energy. Upon elaboration of the Unit Average Values, the next step consists in the so-called preliminary energy diagnostics that enables measures aimed at management streamlining.

Possible benefits of LOCALES include, among others, the energy efficiency and rational use of energy in buildings, which is a frequently debated issue in the administration that is obliged to retrofit at least 3% of its assets: “The indicated savings are only part of mainly management-related streamlining (including IP); we estimate about 15-20%  of the initial expenditure; if this percentage is taken away, one can consider investing in the measures aimed at the energy efficiency and rational use of energy from the cost and benefit point of view,” continues Calabresi.

The study identified some shortcomings: “The structure of the State General Accounting Office is rigid, it has about 50 items for expenditure; we have gathered those relating to the energy (6). There may be mistakes of allocation, possible adjustments that generate occasional or common phenomena of declaring zero expenditure”. A clarification of Calabresi, was also referred to by Roberto Gerbo, Eng.: “SIOPE is an underused system that has some irregularities: for instance, the data for electrical power are recorded by means of a unique code, and those for thermal power through 4 different codes.” Moreover, the method could be extended “to many other sectors, for example those of waste or public health,” as “this is the real spending review that the government should undertake.” Also in the “families of communes,” similarly as in households, the awareness and precision may actually ensure significant savings. “The anomalies sometimes derive from administration errors: the Commune of Rivoli (province of Turin) used to spend €100,000 more a year only because it did not update the energy plans set forth by contracts relating to the systems it still used”.

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