From Concept to Reality: Implementing ESPC Projects

By Jen Singer, ICF on May 02, 2018

This blog is part 2 of our 5-part series exploring DOE’s ESPC Toolkit. The ESPC Accelerator was a 3-year partnership of states, local governments, and K-12 schools to expand access to energy savings performance contracting, or ESPC. ESPC is a financing mechanism that provides upfront capital for energy efficiency projects, which is then repaid by the guaranteed savings on utility bills resulting from the upgrades. You can check out the first webinar here.

Last month we introduced you to the ESPC Toolkit, and the resources available to help you decide whether energy savings performance contracting was the right financing mechanism for your contract. But once you’ve decided to go with an ESPC, how do you get started? The next set of resources are all about implementation. Below is an overview of Implementing ESPC:

  • ESPC Virtual Technical Assistant: Interact with the Virtual Technical Assistant to follow each step of developing and implementing an ESPC project in five phases.  This tool includes detailed step-by-step instructions and links to resources needed at certain points in the ESPC process. Also visit the Establishing an ESPC Program section of this Toolkit for a document version of this tool that state and local governments can program into their own websites and customize to their local ESPC practices and conditions.
  • Financing Decision Tree: A decision tree that enables users to select the form(s) of financing best suited to their jurisdiction's conditions.  The tool includes a mini-glossary with an explanation of each financing type included.
  • Best Practices for Selecting an Energy Service Company (ESCO): This document compiles all the best practices for each step of identifying and selecting an ESCO suitable for a project.
  • Model ESPC Contract Documents: Model ESPC contract and companion document templates enable users to structure ESPC projects in a consistent way to reduce the ESPC project timeline and transaction costs.
  • eProject Builder: This database tool provides consistent tracking and reporting of ESPC project data, enabling project owners to make the business case for ESPC, negotiate strong ESPC projects, and standardize project results reporting.


Register now for the Implementing ESPC webinar. Learn more about the Better Buildings Energy Savings Performance Contracting Toolkit and don’t forget to sign up for our entire ESPC webinar series. Watch for our next blog installment, Establishing an ESPC Program.