November 11 – the International Day of Energy Saving - has opened the Week of action on energy saving and energy efficiency in many regions of Russia and in other countries. The Climate Secretariat of the Social Ecological Union and the organizing committee of the SPARE project have held a press conference on the topic in St.Petersburg.

During the week, from 11 to 17 November, the information campaign of the Social Ecological Union "Energy efficiency is the most big, clean and cheap source of energy in Russia" starts in St.Petersburg, Bryansk, Yekaterinburg, Irkutsk, Vladivostok and other cities. NGOs in collaboration with experts draw attention of various community groups to the fact that energy efficiency can free a lot of energy, and this is the real source of energy that can be used for energy needs.

In 2009, the Federal Law on Energy Saving was adopted, and since 2010 the State Program on energy saving and energy efficiency for the period up to 2020 is implemented (http://rusecounion.ru/mp_russia). This is the first step in reducing the GDP energy intensity. The measures planned within the framework of the State Program shall give primary energy savings of 1.124 billion tce by 2020, including 330 billion cubic meters of natural gas, 630 billion kWh of electricity, 1550000000 Gcal of heat, and 17 million tons of oil products.

The energy obtained through energy efficiency is safer for the environment and people, allows reducing polluting emissions and greenhouse gases that cause climate change.

According to the International Energy Agency, the energy produced by the energy efficiency and energy saving costs FOUR times less than the energy produced by construction of new power stations.

1The estimated annual electricity saving within the State Program (63 billion kWh) exceeds the total planned production for the same period of one of Russia's largest nuclear power plants (Leningrad or Kursk NPPs - each 28 billion kWh per year) and of the Russia's largest thermal power station - Surgut GRES (up to 39 billion kWh per year).
O. N. Senova, the coordinator of the campaign of the Social Ecological Union "Energy efficiency is the most big, clean and cheap source of energy in Russia", the chairperson of "Friends of the Baltic" NGO, presented expert evidence on the potential of energy efficiency in different sectors of the economy, among which final energy consumers make more than one third. For example, only modernization of lighting can save in Russia 57 terawatt hours. Efficient and economical use of energy in homes, schools, offices, industrial premises by reducing heat losses, the use of energy-efficient lighting, economical electrical equipment, control and regulation of energy resources, energy-saving practices and conduct gives huge total savings over the country and saves own resources. Participants of the SPARE project (school project for saving resources and energy) headed by "Friends of the Baltic" - more than 600 schools in Russia – implement simple energy-saving actions this week: insulate windows, analyze reserves of electricity saving at schools and at homes, hold exhibitions and information activities for residents.

N. V. Pitirimov, the chairman of the non-commercial partnership "City homeowners association," stressed that the population of St.Petersburg is the largest end user of energy resources. In the overall structure of energy consumption, population accounts for 40 %. The population of St. Petersburg is the highest potential for energy savings and makes 45 %.

1The City homeowners association implements energy-saving measures as part of a citywide project "Energy efficient quarter," within which the complex of energy efficiency measures in apartment houses with a total area of 250 thousand m² was implemented in 2013 using the latest innovative energy-saving technologies for a total of up to 125 million rubles. Energy service contracts for six apartment buildings are run. In 2014, 10,000 units of energy-saving equipment are planned to be installed - intelligent lighting systems in common areas in apartment buildings on the conditions of direct purchases or energy service contract (for details see http://spbgorod.nethouse.ru/posts/562666).

E. V. Podgaisky, the General Director of "Center for Transboundary Cooperation - St.Petersburg" NGO told about the project named "Campaign to raise awareness of energy efficiency among construction sector participants in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine” (ARCEE), which aims to explore the opportunities and constraints for implementation of energy efficiency measures in the three countries. The European partners of the project provide practical advice on improving energy efficiency in new construction and reconstruction of old residential buildings. With their help, the NGO prepares recommendations for energy-efficient modernization of the housing stock in Kirov town of the Leningrad region and in Kolpino, including houses of 137 series.

G. Markin, the implementation coordinator of the UNDP / Global Environment Facility Project "Energy efficiency of buildings in North-West Russia," spoke about the guidance documents on energy efficiency of buildings in the Vologda region developed within the project. It is planned to implement energy efficiency measures in three apartment buildings. For Ostrovsky and Nevel municipalities in the Pskov region, a municipal information system for energy efficiency was created. Arkhangelsk region got certification models for residential and public buildings, and a model of market participants’ interaction. The project will result not only in energy saving, but in increasing comfort of homes for more than a thousand inhabitants in Pskov, Vologda and Arkhangelsk regions.

1These examples show that energy efficiency creates both social, economic, and environmental benefits. If the State Program achieves its objectives (this requires detailed development of the law, support for energy service companies, environmental technical standards, priority lending to 'green' projects by state banks) and all other available potential energy resources are involved, it will give the opportunity to release energy for other industrial and social needs and eliminate the need to build new and "dirty" thermal plants, dangerous nuclear power plants or large hydropower plants damaging nature and life of indigenous population.


For more information, please contact:
Climate Secretariat of the Russian Socio-Ecological Union:
www.rusecounion.ru, phone: +79219117986, rseu.climate@gmail.com, SENOVA Olga Nikolaevna