MLEI Accelerate: Street lighting

Location: Province of Huelva, Andalusia (Spain)

Population: 483,792 [Provincial Population]

Climate: Mediterranean

Duration: 2012-2016 (completed)

Sector: Street lighting

Funding sources: EU

City networks: Covenant of Mayors; Mancomunidades [Association of Municipalities]

Savings:  10,986,807 KWh of energy saved per year.

Solutions: Implementation of different actions to speed up the investment process in renewable energy and energy efficiency of Huelva’s municipalities.

Multiple benefits: Annual CO2 reductions and the creation of 100 green jobs.

The MLEI-ACCELERATE project, part of the Intelligent Energy Europe Programme, has been coordinated and implemented by the Provincial Diputación of Huelva (DIPH) with the technical assistance of the Huelva Provincial Energy Agency (APEH). Its principal aim is to accelerate the process of energy-efficient investment in the municipalities of the Huelva Province that signed up to the Covenant of Mayors (79 municipalities).

Objective –The strategic aim of MLEI-ACCELERATE is to bundle investments in the energy efficiency of Huelva’s municipalities which are committed to the Covenant of Mayors, in order to make them financially viable.

Solutions – The development of MLEI Accelerate included the following activities: the creation of “Grouped Tendering Process for the Efficient Management of Public Lighting in Municipalities in the Province of Huelva”; dissemination and technical assistance contract signing; energy data analysis; bundling investments proposal; group tender specifications document.

Funding –The EU funds supported the development of MLEI Accelerate.

Innovation – The criteria for bundling investments followed an innovative analysis for the region, which took into account the geographical proximity and the links to supramunicipal structures (such as associations of municipalities), the investment quantity for energy efficiency and renewable public lighting, and the financial solvency following the meetings with various ESCos.

Furthermore, the MLEI-ACCELERATE project accomplished a theoretical development and the establishment of an innovative administrative procedure for grouped tender contracts, without having to constitute a new regulatory framework as would be the case for centralized procurement, a consortium, mancommunidad, etc.

Success factors –The financial model chosen by the Technical Assistance Team was energy service contracts through Energy Services Companies (ESCOs) with demonstrable financial capacity to be able to undertake the required investments.

In addition, one of the main keys to ensure energy service contract success is to involve decision-makers, including politicians, technical officers, financial and accounts staff for all Administrations involved. This involvement should take place right from the beginning of contract development, through technical and administrative phases, to the finalizing contracts phase. Another key point is to provide a complete inventory of all installations, in order to be able to ensure the expected energy and financial saving. A final aspect to guarantee success in these types of contracts is to demand the best possible technical specification for all equipment involved in the investments.

Significant outcomes:

  • GHG emissions reduced of 5,835 tons of CO2;
  • 10,986,807 KWh of energy saved per year;
  • EUR 1,710,535 of energy costs reduced per year;
  • 100 jobs created;
  • As the province has more than 75% of the municipalities with less than 5,000 inhabitants, the following outcomes were also met:
    • Economies of scale;
    • Higher purchases power for equipment, materials and electricity at better prices;
    • Contract duration substantially reduced;
    • Response time for breakdowns optimized;
    • Guarantee for the municipality to avoid debt improved;
    • Most advanced technical solutions provided.

Synergies with local policies:

  • Law 2/2007, from 27/03/07, encourages the use of renewable energy, promotes saving and energy efficiency, as well as how to order the rational use of energy resources in the territory of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia, under the principle of collective solidarity in the use of energy;
  • Andalusian Energy Strategy 2014-2020 is the new Regional policy framework that aims for a low carbon economy. It attempts to reduce by 25% of the primary energy consumption, to provide 25% of final gross energy consumption with renewable energy, a 5% self-consumption of electricity generated with renewable sources and decarbonize the energy consumption by 30% compared to 2007;

 Political alignment:


This model is easily extrapolated for future bundled investment projects for the DIPH and other public administrations.

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Sector: Lighting

Country / Region: Spain

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In 1 user collection: Good practices of cities

Knowledge Object: User generated Initiative

Published by: Deputation of Huelva