Caverion’s services and solutions for increasing energy efficiency of clients operations

Sustainable development requires accounting for the entire life cycle of a property through professional design, efficient technical solutions and quality implementation, as well as comprehensive operation and maintenance. Energy efficiency is integrated into all of Caverion’s services and solutions.

We help our clients to meet the increasingly strict targets set for the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. In addition, we want to provide property users with healthy, safe and comfortable conditions. Properties should be cost-effective and retain their value, whilst being easy to maintain and have flexibility to adapt to changing needs.

Life-cycle thinking demands a shift of attitudes with regard to costs: instead of the initial investment alone, one needs to account for the energy and operating costs over the entire life cycle, which may span from 20 to 50 years. Investing slightly more in functional, effective systems during the building phase enables the achievement of larger overall savings in the long run, as energy consumption and building’s environmental impact are reduced.


Energy efficiency – without compromising on functionality or comfort


Energy efficiency considered already in design

We consider the environmental impact and energy efficiency of properties from the very beginning, i.e. the design phase, and evaluate the effects of technical solutions planned for the in terms of the entire life cycle. We design technical systems in such a way that they contribute to the energy efficieny of the property and that their maintenance takes up a minimum amount of resources.

Designing the property’s all technical systems as an entity, rather than separately bidding for individual systems, improves the energy efficiency. The new regulations emphasise the significance of total consumption of the property, which further supports the need for design and implementation that integrates all systems.

Our advisory services cover property energy audits and analyses as well as developing the efficiency of technical systems. We also provide advice related to, for example, environmental certificates.

We have own product development and in-depth knowledge related to the use of renewables, such as solar, wind and ground power and seawater cooling or phace change materials (PCM) in heating and cooling properties.

Towards zero-energy buildings

The EU’s target of nearly zero-energy building by 2020 places great demands on building systems in the properties. In practice, a zero-energy building produces the same amount of renewable energy as it consumes in terms of fossil fuels. This requires extremely energy-efficient building systems and a reduction of the energy needs for heating premises and service water.

A passive house also consumes very little purchased energy: nearly all the heat energy derives from solar energy and the heat produced by building’s use. While the standards vary from country to country, in Finland, Sweden and Norway, for example, a passive house may consume no more than roughly a quarter of what buildings that meet the requirements of 2008 consume.

Although both zero-energy and passive houses are fairly challenging to implement in the climate of Northern Europe, some of Caverion’s projects have already been implemented according to these models.

In Finland, Caverion was responsible for implementing the technical systems of the elderly home Onnelanpolku in Lahti according to a nearly zero-energy concept. The energy consumption of the property, opened in June 2014, has been minimised through energy-efficient ventilation and pumps, LED lighting and presence-based lighting that also adjusts according to daylight. The building uses renewable energy in versatile ways and makes efficient use of free and waste energy flows. Solar energy accounts for about 20% of the total energy consumption. The building is connected to Caverion’s control room, from where its energy consumption is´continuously monitored and optimised.

In Norway, we have been in charge of the total deliveries of building systems for several properties being built as passive houses. In 2014, these included the new police station of Arendal and an office building in Bergen, among others.

Automation and remote management skimp on energy costs

A majority of emissions derive from energy consumed during the use of buildings.  Energy-efficient building systems, automation and the appropriate operation and maintenance of technical systems can reduce the energy consumption of existing properties by up to 30%.

The energy efficiency is increased when technical systems are used only when they are actually needed and they are controlled through automation. Automation ensures that buildings are, for example, heated and cooled only when necessary and that lights are on only when there are people present.

The remote management and monitoring of a building, on the other hand, ensures that whenever the premises are in use their conditions always corresponds with what was agreed. Through remote management we can ensure that operation and maintenance of technical systems is always based on actual needs and that they perform the appropriate measures. It also enables immediate actions, if problems occur. When technical systems are managed remotely, there is no need for a technician to arrive on site for every minor measure.

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Comprehensive responsibility for energy use for up to 20 years

In the most extensive forms of cooperation, Caverion may assume responsibility for designing, implementating, operating and maintaining of technical systems even for several decades.The target can be a new property, to which we provide technical systems or an existing property going through modernisation. The client is usually a municipality or some other public sector client. Life cycle projects are carried out with different financing and contract models, such as Private Public Partnership (PPP).

The ESCO (Energy Service Company) and EPC (Energy Performance Contracting) energy-saving contracts are examples of our life cycle projects where we guarantee our client the energy savings specified in the contract as well as the efficiency, functionality, security and the agreed conditions over a contact period of 20 years or more.

The project usually begins with an analysis of the property’s energy consumption. Based on this analysis, we will plan measures for increasing the efficiency of systems through, for example, modernisation. After the project delivery, Caverion is responsible for the property’s maintenance throughout the operational phase.

No initial investments are needed from the client, such as a municipality or other public sector client, since the investment is financed with the realised savings, typically split between the client and Caverion. If the guaranteed savings are not achieved, Caverion is responsible for the difference. The savings guarantee is one of our competitive advantages, as few service providers can offer such a service.

The ESCO and EPC models differ from one another mostly in terms of their size: ESCO agreements typically include only a single property or a maximum of a few properties, while EPC agreements may in some cases cover the entire building stock of a municipality.

Some fifty life cycle projects ongoing

Our oldest life cycle agreement began already in 2000. The client is usually a municipality or some other public sector client. In the past few years, demand for life cycle agreements has been increasing especially in Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

In 2014, Caverion had some fifty ongoing life cycle agreements. In Sweden there were projects ongoing in the municipalities of Söderhamn, Mora and Kalmar, among others. In Denmark, we are responsible for the managed operations and overall energy efficiency of the courthouse of Western Jutland and the Holstebro police station for the next 25 years as part of a life cycle agreement implemented according to the PPP model. In Finland, such projects are underway in, for instance, the Huhtasuo school and daycare centre in Jyväskylä, the Kaivomestari property in Espoo and in life cycle daycare centres in the City of Porvoo. 

Resource efficiency through waste management

The EU’s directive on waste obligates member states to increase the efficiency of recycling by 2020 in, for instance, such a way that at least half of all paper, metal, plastic and glass waste is recycled. In addition to energy efficiency, Caverion contributes to resource efficiency by providing solutions for the collection of waste, among others.

Envac vacuum waste collection system facilitates the waste management of entire residential areas. Using an underground pipe network, waste travels to the collection station, from which it is transported onwards and to be used as recycled material, burned for energy or turned into compost soil. A major part of waste transportation becomes unnecessary, which results in less traffic and emissions and also improves safety and attractiveness of the area.

We have delivered Finland’s first Envac system in Suurpelto, Espoo, in 2010. In early 2014, a similar system was operational in the Jätkäsaari residential area in Helsinki, and a third is being built in the Kalasatama area. In addition to designing and installing the systems, we are responsible for their maintenance for approximately 20 years after completion.


Responsibility throughout the life cycle


Substantial savings through remote management


Energy-efficient passive house through renovation


Turning waste into electricity and district heat