Is it possible to modernize apartment buildings to net zero within just a few days? The innovators at ecoworks claim just this and were awarded with the jury’s prize at this year’s DENEFF annual conference. Dr. Camilla Bausch of Ecologic Institute headed the jury for the third consecutive year to choose the winner of the competition. The innovation by ecoworks was only one of many exciting projects in the running for the 2019 PERPETUUM Energy Efficiency Prize.
The awards were presented at the Annual Conference of the Deutsche Unternehmensinitiative Energieeffizienz (German Industry Initiative for Energy Efficiency - DENEFF). The winning innovation was selected from 10 short-listed projects, which were presented during the conference.
“Ecoworks impressed the jury with its integrated approach, which brings different trades together. The solution addresses key challenges in existing buildings and is very cost-effective due to industrial production. This makes demanding renovations calculable. This process innovation highlights the impressive creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of so many in the energy efficiency field. Additional tailwind could be provided by a stable political framework.”
The around 350-member audience was also given a chance to vote, selecting the product ovis by the company vilisto as their favourite innovation. Ovis is an intelligent thermometer system: a self-learning heating control device for offices. The thermometer learns from user behavior and the building specifications, enabling heating systems to be controlled automatically and anticipatorily, while accounting for user and ambient conditions.
The Newcomer Award was presented to Jonas Scheumann, a student at the Aachen University of Applied Sciences.
To look at all of the innovations included in the short list, click here.
Along with Dr. Bausch, the 2019 jury included Dr. Dirk Bessau, Office Manager of Berlin/Business Development KIC, Dr. Christian Bogatu, Founder and CEO of Fresh Energy and winner of the 2018 PERPETUUM Audience Award, Uta Weiß, Head of Energy at the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research Heidelberg (IFEU), Prof. Dr. Peter Radgen, Chair of Energy Efficiency at the University of Stuttgart, Dr. Sabrina Schulz, Head of the Berlin Office of the KFW Banking Group, and Susanne Ehlerding, Editor of the Tagesspiegel, Background Energy and Climate.
In addition to the awards, the DENEFF annual conference focused on contributions of important players from business and politics. Svenja Schulze, German Federal Minister for the Environment, held the key note. She underlined the importance of climate protection policy for international peace. She also highlighted the importance of a climate protection law to be passed this year, building on the climate protection plan 2050 and its sectoral targets. The government has to provide a stable framework for long-term planning. Minister Schulze underlined that in this context energy efficiency has to play an important role, while acknowledging that progress e.g. with respect to the energy efficient refurbishment of the building stock is too slow.