How to Get the Your CO2 Balance Calculation Funded

In this blog article, we introduce you to the federal funding for energy and resource efficiency in business. In doing so, we address the funding competition as well as the eligible preparation of transformation concepts (including your CO2 balance).

Launched in November 2021, the Energy and Resource Efficiency Funding Competition is an instrument of the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection that promotes investment measures to improve the energy and resource efficiency of companies. The aim is to provide incentives to invest in highly efficient energy-saving technologies and reduce energy and resource consumption as well as CO2 emissions. [1]

What is being funded?

The legal framework for the funding competition is the Guideline for Federal Funding for Energy and Resource Efficiency in Business - Grant and Loan. The following areas are funded:

  • Cross-cutting technologies
  • Measures for the provision of process heat from renewable energies
  • Measurement and control technology, sensor technology and energy management software
  • Measures to optimize the energy and resource requirements of plants and processes
  • Transformation concepts (see below)
The funding competition will support projects that meet the following criteria:
  • Energy and resource cost-related payback period: more than three years without funding
  • Useful life: at least three years
  • Project duration: two years, for transformation concepts - see below - up to five years

Around 54,000 projects are to be initiated by the end of 2026.

How much is being funded?

  • Award criterion: funding efficiency (requested funding amount in relation to expected CO2 savings or "funding euro" per annual CO2 savings achieved).
  • Funding ratio: up to 45% of eligible costs
  • Funding amount: up to 15 million euros per investment project

How does the funding work?

Funding is provided either as a direct grant (BAFA) or as a repayment grant in conjunction with a loan from the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW).

How does the application process work?

After a successful submission of your project outline, you will be asked to prepare a full application including your savings concept. Applications can be submitted continuously. There are several application rounds per year.

  Tip: With the BMWi's quick check, you can check whether your project idea is eligible for funding. The funding efficiency calculator helps you to determine the expected funding efficiency.  


As part of the federal funding for energy and resource efficiency in business, the creation of transformation concepts is also eligible for funding.

A transformation concept is the presentation of the longer-term decarbonization strategy of a company or a company location. It includes a qualitative and quantitative description of the initial situation in relation to a CO2 reduction target as well as possible measures to achieve the CO2 target. The goal is to plan and implement a transformation to greenhouse gas neutrality.

According to the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK), the transformation concept should at least address the following aspects:

  • Presentation of the ACTUAL state of GHG emissions or the GHG balance within the selected system boundaries.
  • formulation of a GHG neutrality target by 2045 at the latest
  • a longer-term (at least ten years after application) and concrete GHG target (TARGET state) for the site(s) under consideration
  • Action plan for achieving the target or the transformation from the ACTUAL to the TARGET state
  • Anchoring of the transformation concept in the corporate structure
  • At least one savings concept for one investment project

What is being funded?

The following components of a transformation concept are eligible:

  • Description of the opportunities and risks of the options for action: Identify problems that are not yet solvable from today's perspective,
  • Evaluation of opportunities and risks using scenarios and other tools,
  • If necessary, comparison of alternative options for action including risks, prioritization of one option for action
  • Examination of the extraction and use of waste heat potential both inside and outside the plant.

How high is the funding?

  • Funding rate: 50% of the eligible costs or 60% for SMEs.
  • Funding amount: max. 80,000 euros

How does the funding work?

  • Duration: 12 months, 24 months in some cases
  • Beneficiaries: Commercial enterprises with a permanent establishment or branch office in Germany as well as contractors for the implementation of individual projects at companies eligible to apply (concrete savings in operating materials)
  • Project sponsor: VDI/VDE-IT
  • Deadline: continuous submission as of 01.11.2021

Further information can be found in the BMWi information sheet (in German) on Transformation Concepts.

  Tip: You can involve external consultant for the calculation of the carbon footprint as well as companies to certify the carbon footprint, consulting companies for the respective measures, companies for risk consulting and scenario analysis, financing consulting, legal consulting, and other services required in connection with the preparation of the transformation concept.  

Our offer

We are happy to support you in the preparation of your carbon footprint and the development of a climate neutrality roadmap. With our offer we are listed as a consultant for climate neutrality at GUTcert. As a market leader in the field of funding consultancy, we have many years of experience in the areas of national and international funding and are happy to provide you with advice and support at every stage of the application process. Click here for more information. Feel free to email us at


Author: Katharina Prontnicki

[1] "Was, wer und wie wird im Förderwettbewerb gefördert?":

Dr Denise Ott

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