IDEAAS used REEEP funding to develop the Center for Learning on Renewable Energy and Decentralized Generation, which provides a basis for the two projects that have won the Itaú Bank 'Ecomudança Award' (Eco Change Award) and 'Fundo Itaú de Excelência Social' (Itaú Fund for Social Excellence 2008). Itaú Bank is the largest Brazilian Private Bank, and interested in projects on renewable energy and CO² Emissions Saving.
The project that won the Eco Change Award is "The Sun Light House”, which aims to change a non renewable matrix (LPG) to a renewable matrix for 10,000 families of traditional shrimp fishermen in the south of Brazil. The project will save 45,000 tons of CO²/year and represents a market of US$ 30-40 million.
Demonstration units were installed at the Center for Learning on Renewable Energy and Decentralized Generation, and fishingmen were given training and capacity building. Using the Award money, IDEAAS will create a financial guarantee fund to help these low income people to access financing to change gas lamps used to attract the shrimps for solar lamps.
As well as the “Itaú Bank Eco Change Award’, IDEAAS received a new award, FIES 2008 - Fundo Itaú de Excelência Social (Itaú Fund for Social Excellence 2008) - a $65,000 Award from the ITAÚ Investment Funds. The winning project is “Renewable Happiness,” (Alegrias Renováveis) which aims to show teenagers from Santo Antonio da Patrulha Municipality that it is easy to be green.
It will use the Center for Learning on Renewable Energy and Decentralized Generation to demonstrate how easily they can make energy efficiency improvements at home, as well as using renewable energy.
The award money will be used to improve the installations of the Center, which were first financed by REEEP, installing the “Efficient Home”, the “Renewable Energy Plaza” and the “Sustainability Route,” where the visitor will meet important concepts on sustainability, environment, energy efficiency and renewable energy.
IDEAAS will also organize training courses for engineers and architects, and will also invite the schools from Porto Alegre city to visit the Center.