The NOVICE Project

NOVICE was a Horizon 2020 project that had the goal of developing an innovative business model for energy service companies (ESCOs) that will provide energy savings to buildings and Demand Response (DR) services to the grid after the renovation.
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Enhanced EPC's That Create Dual Revenue Streams

Both services will be included in a single EPC (Energy Performance Contract) between the client and the ESCO.

Demand Response services are provided by an aggregator and the relationship between the former and the ESCO will be mediated by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). This dual revenue stream brings down energy efficiency projects’ usual long payback time and intends to accelerate the much-need building renovation rates across Europe.

The Novice Project

The main objectives of this project were:

  • To engage with the new and existing stakeholders (ESCOs, aggregators, facilities management, technology providers) disseminating the innovative business model.
  • To study the regulatory, market, financial and technological barriers to the NOVICE model and address them via the design of the innovative model and providing recommendations to some of the stakeholders (policy makers, facilitators, etc).
  • To prescribe the energy technologies that enhance the potential of both demand response flexibility and energy efficiency at the time of a building renovation.
  • To develop the NOVICE business model, design a new Energy Performance Contracting template for dual energy services and draft a template for the MoU between the ESCO and the aggregator.

Our background, at Lawler Sustainability formerly known as Noel Lawler Green Energy Solutions, on EPC’s and our vast experience in delivering energy efficiency projects allowed us to play an important role in this project.

Our inputs came at two levels:

  1. Development of the business model and the new EPC template.
  2. Deployment of the dual energy services in a real case study.

Lawler Sustainability was responsible for demonstrating this innovative concept in a real case study.

Firstly, a supermarket in Kilkenny was chosen and the results were very encouraging…

Reducing Payback Time


The inclusion of Demand Response into the design of an energy efficiency upgrade brought down the overall payback time by 25%.

Secondly, a DR event was simulated in the Ballymun Sports and Leisure Centre.

HVAC equipment was shut down for a period of 2 hours during peak operating hours. The objective was to assess whether demand response events can have an impact on a building’s normal operations. The leisure centre users were surveyed at the end of the event.

76% of the building users did not notice any change in air quality. 12% felt an incorrect change and only 12% felt accurately the air quality worsen.

This demonstration proved that demand response can be used in sites, even with strict indoor air requirements and not affect significantly the building’s normal operations.

Ballymun Sports and Leisure Centre – Dublin City Council
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Report: Impact of demand response on thermal comfort for a Leisure Center

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Contributors include Andreea Le Cam at IERC, Joanna Southernwood at IERC, Dan Clarke at Kiwi Power, Rosie Creedon at University College Cork and our very own Managing Director – Daniel Ring.