The energy efficiency industry has always been hampered by the inability for investors, especially the building owner, to be able to “bank” on predicted project returns that have been verified for authenticity by independent parties. Currently, the calculation of potential savings are controlled by the developers and due diligence activities to verify them by third parties are typically skipped due to the time and cost required to re-engineer one-off projects with disparate engineering methodologies and documentation. In the commercial sector, this issue has been one of several issues which have severely inhibited the realization of the vast potential for energy savings and associated financial gains.
The Investor Confidence Project (ICP) has been laying the groundwork for a transformation of how the industry operates. The first step was the development of the ICP protocols by industry leaders that provide a roadmap for developers to incorporate standardized engineering and documentation. The next step was the introduction of a program to train and qualify Credentialed Project Developers with the experience and expertise necessary to develop quality ICP compliant projects. Today, ICP announces the launch of its Credentialed Quality Assurance (QA) Provider program which facilitates the vital and neglected step of verification of project fundamentals by independent third parties. The new program is the final piece of the ICP System which now allows projects that pass review to be certified as ICP Investor Ready Energy Efficiency™. These projects bring investor and building owners a new level of confidence in the engineering principles, underlying assumptions and especially the predicted financial yields of projects.
The commercial energy efficiency industry has been perched on a tipping point to see a significant increase in deal flow. The current combination of software automation, financial innovation such as PACE and Green Banks, and standardization through ICP’s Investor Ready Energy Efficiency™ holds promise to usher in a new era that will finally realize the massive potential energy savings and economic profits of the commercial energy efficiency sector.