The following specific objectives will be aimed at:
1. Improving the accessibility of agro-food cooperative SMEs to energy efficiency assessment.
The geographic dispersion that causes this barrier can only be overcome by means of actions led by the association of cooperatives participating in TESLA project, which have a territorial structure and representation in it. The team composed of people from the different organizations makes this access easier for they are technicians usually advising these cooperatives companies.
In order to fulfil this object properly it is necessary that their training in energy efficiency is wide enough albeit mainly practical. These technicians know perfectly the agro-industry processes, and for the success of the project they will be trained in depth in energy analysis of these processes and in the handling of measurement equipments.
2. Delivering a comprehensive methodology on energy management, adapted to European agro-food industries special characteristics.
The current audit practices and methodologies can no longer be used in this sector because they are not adequate for the special characteristics of the agro-food industry sector, such as the seasonality. The particular aspects extracted from the general methodologies which could be useful for the specific ones for this particular sector, will be precisely identified, taken into account, and adapted when necessary. This adaptation will be tested during the corresponding TESLA tasks.
Finally, a detailed analysis will be carried out, without developing any investigation, identifying the most updated trends and improvements of agro-food processes which are interesting from the energy efficiency point of view. These actions should be accurately disseminated towards specific targets, such as the handbooks aimed at SMEs and the BAT Guides aimed at engineering companies, agro-food processes equipment companies, and students of agro-food degrees.
3. Boosting energy efficiency and renewable energies investments in agro-food SMEs.
Individual audits and handbooks dissemination are not enough to achieve the implementation of energy efficiency measures by the SMEs. A final boost will be necessary to overcome the lack of implementation barrier, and to encourage SMEs to take the decision of implementing the proposed measures. This will be a key specific objective of TESLA project. The decision will be facilitated by showing them examples from other similar companies which have succeeded with the investment. However, the essential contribution of TESLA project will be the Key Actors involvement through the Key Actors Panel and other communication activities. Key Actors will facilitate the access to equipment purchase and their financing through the Key Actors offers. For this purpose, brokerage events and specific meetings will be organized with auditors, Key Actors and SMEs to analyze each measure in particular and to develop tailored technical and financing solutions to each audited cooperative.
The TESLA Project has been designed, planned and leaded by four national cooperatives associations which main mission is the improvement of the competitiveness of these companies, including the better economic and environmental performance. In terms of reduction of expenditures, energy efficiency fits better than anything with this target.