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EU Energy Policy:
- Intelligent Energy for Europe

Updated: November 2006 & 2007

Index of this Page
· New Program for 2007-2013, October 2006. Read
· 2006 Call, May 2006. Read

· SAVE Programme. Read

· ALTENER Programme. Read

· ALTENER/STEER Programmes. Read
· 2004-2005 Call. Read
· First Call. Read
· Main Contents of First Call. Read
· General Content of Intelligent Energy for Europe - A New EU Energy Framework Programme, December 2002. Read
· Development of Programme (Procedure), April 2002. Read

New Program for 2007-2013
In October, 2006 the the European energy ministers approved a continuation of the Intelligent Energy for Europe (IEE) programme, for support of sustainable energy for the period 2007-2013. More information: IEE 2007-2008 Continuation.

2006 call
Last call for Intelligent Energy for Europe May 31, 2006

The EU Commission made the call for proposals for the last round of Intelligent Energy for Europe funding in the 2003-2006 budget period. The deadline was 31/10 2006.

The budget for the call wa
s 48.1 mill. Euro of which 43.2 mill. Euro are for SAVE, ALTENER, STEER projects and horizontal actions. The rest is for SAVE agencies and events. Projects start: 30/6 2007. Maximal project period: 3 years.

All legal person including registered NGOs in EU countries can participate in the projects. Also organisations from Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Bulgaria, Romania, and Croatia can participate, though with some special rules. EU can finance 50% of project costs. The priorities in this call were:

SAVE Programme
" Multiplying success in buildings” with the target areas: Tools for the take-off of the Directive on the energy performance of buildings, schemes for energy services in buildings (in particular retrofitting), public buildings as shining examples, and promotion of best practice examples of high energy performance buildings

" Retrofitting of social housing” with the target areas: Awareness raising, education and training, tailored financing schemes, advanced integrated retrofitting solutions, legal and institutional changes “Innovative approaches in industry” with the target areas: Instruments for energy management, including energy audits, energy accounting, benchmarking activities, voluntary agreements, Energy services, particularly in SME's, Poly generation, including CHP “Energy efficient equipment and products” with the target areas: Enforcing the application and enhancing the awareness of EU labels and minimum energy efficiency standards, Technology procurement, buyer-initiatives and other approaches to accelerate the transformation of the market, Monitoring market transformation and preparing the ground for new policy initiatives.

ALTENER Programme
"Electricity from renewable energy sources” with the target areas: national indicative targets, support schemes, grid system issues, green electricity, distributed electricity generation.

"Heat from renewable energy sources (RES)” with the target areas: Possible legislation, fuels standards and norms for RES heating and cooling systems, Supply chain and market structures for RES heating and cooling products, Promotion and training.

"Small scale renewable energy sources applications” with the target areas: Solar water and space heating and cooling, PV electricity generation, Biomass for domestic heating, including biogas, Small-scale and micro-CHP and heat pumps, Small scale wind and hydro electricity generation.

" Alternative vehicle propulsion” with the target areas: Legislation, fiscal regimes and fuels standards and norms, Supply chain and market structures for biofuels, Supply chain and market structures for alternative fuels requiring separate supply chains, Market demand for clean vehicles.

Accompanying measures In the STEER Programme
" Policy measures for an efficient use of energy in transport” with the target areas: Reducing demand for transport, Enhancing energy efficiency in each transport mode, Transfer of traffic to less energy intensive modes, Economic instruments and incentives, Information awareness and education.

"Strengthening the knowledge of local management agencies in the transport field” with the target areas: Training and education of local agencies in alternative fuels and energy use in transport, Helping local actors to collaborate in the programme and participate in projects.

The COOPENER Programme is not open for proposals In HORIZONTAL KEY ACTIONS: “Sustainable Energy Communities” with the target areas: Promoting “energy citizenship” and mobilizing local energy actors, Local community planning for the efficient use of renewable energy sources and conventional, energy, demand side management and associated mobility, Establishing favourable conditions for local energy markets and services to reach a critical mass.

" Think globally, act locally” with the target areas: -ManageEnergy: Actions aimed at inducing a change in present behaviors and in encouraging the use of efficient and renewable technologies and the adoption of energy-intelligent living patterns by local end-users, including the operation of thematic networks of local actors.

" Financing mechanisms & incentives” with the target areas: Cross-country analysis of different financing mechanisms, Development and promotion of innovative financing instruments and incentive schemes for investments in renewable energy sources and the rational use of energy, Platform/Forum for exchange of experience on financing mechanisms & incentives.

" Monitoring & Evaluation” with the target areas: Monitoring and evaluation of different policies and measures related to renewable energy sources and the rational use of energy, Methods, indicators and modeling of future trends and policy impacts, Platform for exchange of experience on monitoring & evaluation SAVE Agencies Creation of local and regional energy management agencies (type 2).

Budget: 4 mill Euro for 20 new agencies EVENTS Budget 0.9 mill. Euro for 25 events.

2004-2005 Call
Calls for proposals for the second major round of "Intelligent for Europe" were released December 2004 with deadline for most calls March 23. The call includes ALTENER, SAVE and STEER (see below) with support for:

  • Support for general actions following the work programme 2004 for Intelligent Energy for Europe and support for local and regional energy management agencies, total 45 mill. €, max 50%
  • Support for events, total 1 mill €, max. 50%, specials deadlines
  • Concerted actions, total 5 mill, €, no limit for share of funding

In addition is support for some activities in some African and Latin American countries in the COOPENER, total budget 5 mill. €, max 50% support.

Actions that can be supported in this call:

SAVE: Multiplying success in buildings, Retrofitting of social houses, Innovative approaches in industry, Energy Efficient Equipment and Products

ALTENER: Renewable Electricity, Renewable Heat, Small Scale Renewable Applications, Alternative vehicle propulsion

STEER: Alternative vehicle propulsion, Policy measures for an efficient use of energy in transport, Strengthening the knowledge of local management agencies in the transport field

COOPENER: Energy policies and market conditions for enabling pover-ty alleviation in developing countries, Strengthening local energy expertise in developing countries, Energy policies and market conditions for enabling pover-ty alleviation in developing countries

In addition there is support for the following horizontal actions:

  • Strengthening local energy expertise in developing countries
  • Think globally, act locally
  • Financing mechanisms & Incentives
  • Monitoring & Evaluation
  • Dissemination & Promotion

First Call
Calls for proposals for the new "Intelligent Energy for Europe" programme were released in the last week of November 2003. They cover the SAVE programme for energy efficiency, ALTENER for renewable energy, COOPENER for cooperation with other countries, and STEER for energy management in transport. For each of the four programmes, support is available for projects within one or two action-areas. In addition, three horizontal areas will be supported (see table). The total budget is 41.5 mill. €.

Main contents of first call
-" Multiplying success in buildings", catalyzing the implementation of the buildings-directive for energy efficiency, and promotion of best practice in efficient buildings.
-Innovative approaches in industry, for industrial energy management and for promotion of cogeneration/polygeneration.

-Promoting renewable energy for electricity production, in particular with focus on the most important non-technological issues for accelerated market introduction of all renewable technologies. This includes grid-system issues, evaluation of support schemes, promotion of decentralised electricity generation.
-Promoting renewable energy for heat by developing appropriate wood-fuel standards, by improving the supply chains of biomass, by developing enabling heat market structures, by stimulating integration of solar heat applications in buildings, by stimulating geothermal heat use with heat pumps, by providing best practice examples, and by training.

Strengthening the knowledge of local management agencies in the transport field, with support, training and education of local actors in alternative fuels and transport energy management.

-Energy policies, legislation, and market conditions to help alleviate poverty in developing countries.
-Strengthening local energy expertise in developing countries.

- Think globally, act locally. Projects to strengthen local actions by local actors with European cooperation, to support creation of new local and regional energy management agencies, and to support creation of a high-level reflection group of major stakeholder in local actions in energy.
-Financing mechanisms & incentives, including analysis of existing financing schemes as well as development and promotion of innovative financing instruments and incentives.
-Monitoring & evaluation of policies and measures for renewable energy and energy efficiency with indicators and modeling of future trends and policy impacts, leading to better design of future policies.

Not easy for NGOs
While NGOs are welcome to submit proposals, there is a requirement of 50% co financing and an expectation of large projects, both of which make it difficult. The expectation is that of the 40+ mill. € support budget there will be only 80 projects supported, which gives an average of 0.5 mill. € of EU support per project and thus average project budgets of 1 mill €. Since the most successful proposals usually have many partners, NGOs can participate as partners with much lower respective budgets, if they can manage the requirement for co financing.
Only some Central and Eastern European countries participate fully in the programme.
The call for proposals, the Intelligent Energy Work Programme 2003, and related documents are available at the website:

General Content of Intelligent Energy for Europe - A New EU Energy Framework Programme
Intelligent Energy for Europe is a new EU program to create a new direction and focus for energy policy in Europe for four (4) years, 2003-2006. The previous energy program ended December 2002. The new is a framework for the SAVE and ALTENER programs to promote respectively energy efficiency and renewable energy. It is a framework for two new programs COOPENER for international co-operation on energy efficiency and renewable energy and STEER for energy aspects of transport. The proposed annual budget is 50% larger than the previous framework program for SAVE, ALTENER, SYNERGY and other energy programs, but the EU energy ministers find that this is too large an increase.

The new energy program makes significant changes from the last 4 years by refocusing budget money into four (4) programs. The old ETAP, SYNERGY, SURE, CARNOT, ALTENER, and SAVE are consolidated into:
- ALTENER - Renewable Energy
- SAVE - Energy Efficiency
- COOPENER - International Energy Support
- STEER - Transportation
These four programs have been chosen (two were already existing) to conform to the two problems with supply and demand outlined by the DG TREN (in charge of energy and transport). The DG expressed a need to deal with transportation and energy demand, and renewable energy and energy supply. These two areas represent what the Commission described as areas needing improvement to meet Energy Security goals and Kyoto Protocol Targets.

An overall budget of EUR200 million has been planned for the years 2003 - 2006 with the following breakdown:
- ALTENER - EUR80 million ;
- SAVE - EUR70 million;
- COOPENER - EUR17 million;
- STEER - EUR32 million
(The Parliament proposes 255 mill. EUR, the Commission 215 mill. EUR, and the countries' energy minister 190 mill. EUR)

All the budgets will be increased with contributions from the new member states as they enter EU.

The previous energy program, over a period of 4 years, spent only EUR175 million. ALTENER and SAVE will enjoy an increase of EUR 10 million respectively from the last four year period if the Commission proposal is accepted.

Moreover, it should be noted that a new executive agency will be created to oversee this and future energy programs. The agency will be tasked with creating yearly guidelines and priorities for spending, rules for participation, and timetables for implementation. It will also partake in the evaluation of projects funded and administrate funds. The European Parliament has proposed a larger, strategic "European Intelligent Energy Agency" to ensure that best practices are quickly replicated across the EU and to facilitate the introduction and deployment of new technologies in energy efficiency and renewable energy.

The original Commission proposal set the stage for more small scale projects to be funded. Like the old program, the new program requires that most projects receive funding with no more than a 50% investment by the EU, requiring third party funding on most projects.

More information on the multi-annual programme 'intelligent energy for Europe", 2003-2006 (COM(2002)0162), see

Development of Programme (Procedure)
The Commission adopted the proposal for a Directive (COM/2002/0162) in April 2002 and sent the proposal to the EU Parliament and the Council of energy ministers for review. EU rules give the Parliament Codecision rights on this policy.

The proposal was discussed in the EU Parliament's industry committee at the end of October'02 and was adopted in November'02

The EU energy ministers also agreed to the proposal at their meeting November 25, 2002, but with a lower budget (190 mill. EUR)

In February, the EU energy ministers confirmed their agreement of proposing a reduction of the budget for the new programme supporting development of renewable energy and energy efficiency. The new proposal includes, however, a possibility for increase after 2004.

The next step was the Parliament's second reading, June 26, 2003. The Commission and the council of EU energy minister agreed to the positions of the Parliament, with the compromise budget of 200 mill. EUR.

The programme entered into force August 4, 2003.

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