INVEEST: The green deal for the industrial sector – what lessons and prospects for the recovery plan?

  • Project newsX

9 March 2021

On January 27, INVEEST joined forces with ADEME, to participate in a webinar organized by Entreprises pour l’Environnement (EpE), Afep and MEDEF.

The goal of this webinar, moderated by David Laurent from EpE and Apolline Abauzit from INVEEST, was to take stock of the France Relance program, to draw lessons from the initial phase of the program and analyze potential prospects for the industrial sector.

Within the industrial sector, where energy ranks among the top 3 cost items, the energy transition is both a matter of competitiveness and resilience. Yet, investments in this sector remain low, although it could achieve up to “20% energy saving, a third of which through investments”, according to Noémie Papon, trainer of the INVEEST program.

In the current economic context, Jean-Baptiste Baroni of the MEDEF and Nicolas Boquet of Afep stressed that energy transition was “as a way to map out perspectives” with a reinforced need to remain “a learning and manufacturing structure in order to transform ideas into effective achievements, with investment as the lifeblood.”

These remarks echoed the findings of the report “Building a Sustainable Recovery” published by EpE and BCG in July 2020, which highlighted that many companies were increasingly concerned that their environmental transition may slow down due to the need for a social response to the crisis.

In light of these observations, several questions were raised:

  • How should we combine the economic recovery of the industrial sector with energy transition?
  • What opportunities does the recovery plan offer?
  • What leverages should be used to unlock the implementation of ambitious projects?

For Tristan Hubé, energy engineer within ADEME’s Industry Department, the results of France Relance are positive. Out of the €1.2 billion fund for industrial decarbonization, €62 million has already been spent. He also highlighted throughout the webinar that the program would be further strengthened through a second call for projects to be launched by mid 2021, the creation of an ASP service with a precise list of mature technologies that may be subsidized to boost projects requiring a CAPEX of less than 3 million euros, and calls for projects to support low-carbon heating.

In response to these announcements, Noémie Papon reaffirmed INVEEST’s driving principle: accelerating companies’ energy transition while helping them preserve their debt capacity.

 “Subsidies a first step, but it they are not sufficient to complete a project” stressed Noémie Papon, before describing other financing solutions offered by the program.

Our trainer also highlighted the importance of understanding the projects to assess them for a financial and risk point of view. Finally, she pointed out, thanks to the testimonies of Christine Delamarre from Crédit Agricole and Lucile Kolter-Charbonnier from Isover (who both followed the program), the importance of acculturating companies to energy efficiency.

“Today we can put forward the energy savings we were able to make, the CO2 emissions we were able to curb, the material withdrawal and recoverable waste we produced. And this phenomenon directly impacts the way we define our Capex internally, but also in the way we approach financing” said Lucile Kotler-Charbonnier at the end of the interview.

The replay of the webinar is available here:

We would like to thank our partners EpE, Afep, MEDEF and ADEME, for this discussion.

The INVEEST training course is available here.