Energy Efficiency Award 2021: dena invites private and public sector companies to apply by 11 June

The search is on for successful projects and pioneering concepts; prize money totalling €30,000 available

Berlin, 22 April 2021. The Deutsche Energie-Agentur (dena) – the German Energy Agency – is seeking outstanding projects that measurably reduce companies’ energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. They will honour the best ideas with the Energy Efficiency Award 2021. Companies of any size and from any sector in Germany or abroad can participate by uploading their application documents at by 11 June.

“The Energy Efficiency Award is presented to pioneers of the energy transition. With their innovative production processes and sustainable business models, they can act as pioneering examples and growth drivers on the way to a carbon-neutral future,” said dena’s Chief Executive, Andreas Kuhlmann, as the application period is launched.

A jury of experts from politics, business, science and media will evaluate the submitted entries. Their criteria will be: energy saving, relevance to climate protection, economic viability, level of innovation and transferability. dena will announce the nominated projects in October 2021. The awards ceremony will take place in November 2021 as part of the  dena Energy Transition Congress. The prestigious award, which dena has been presenting for fifteen years, offers prize money totalling 30,000 euros and is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi).


Six awards in the competition’s four categories

The companies can apply with one or more competition entries in the following four categories:

Think big!
Complex energy transition projects
In this category, systematic thinking and integrated solutions for the energy transition are being sought. Applicants can submit completed projects in which a large number of measures have been coordinated with one another.

From clever to digital
The broad spectrum of energy efficiency
Applications for this category can be submitted by companies whose project demonstrates how energy efficiency can be implemented. This includes low-investment measures as well as mature technologies or the digitally supported optimisation of software solutions, digital sensors and control systems.

Achieving more together
Energy services as an enabler of the energy transition
In this category, prizes will be awarded to projects implemented by companies in which energy service providers are involved. These may contribute, for example, to the conception and planning, implementation, financing, operational management or maintenance of a system.

Concepts for a carbon-neutral future
Innovative ideas and new approaches for a green economy
Companies that pursue new approaches to reduce their energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, or conceive the energy transition in cross-sectoral and cross-system terms (or in integrated, holistic terms), can submit their concepts for the Energy Efficiency Audience Award. The concept should clearly demonstrate which concrete measures are to beused to increase energy efficiency and/or reduce emissions, as well as convince the jury by its innovation and market maturity.


Small and medium-sized enterprises will be recognised separately in two categories

For the first time, small and medium-sized enterprises will receive special recognition this year for their commitment and achievements in implementing energy efficiency measures. Two prizes will be awarded in each of the categories “Think big!” and “From clever to digital”: one for small and medium-sized enterprises and the other for larger enterprises. This will allow the jury to more fully integrate the specific challenges and framework conditions of companies into their evaluation and increase the participants’ chances of winning.