Komotini’s plans for a climate-friendly future
Komotini is a municipality in north-eastern Greece with just under 60,000 inhabitants. Still recovering from the effects of the financial crisis of 2008 and dealing with the resulting financial restrictions, the municipality is now planning to take its energy supply into its own hands. With an impressive track record of active citizenship and a fruitful cooperation between the administration and residents, there are high chances that these plans will soon be put into practice.
Litoměřice: Two decades of working towards a just transition in the Czech Republic
The city of Litoměřice has for a long time been a frontrunner in the Czech energy transition. A former port town not far from Prague, which has now become a commerce and service centre, the city of some 25,000 inhabitants began its energy transition in 2000 with a subsidy scheme for solar water heaters in private homes. 20 years later, Litoměřice is becoming a climate-friendly role model for the Czech Republic and the Central European region.
New ways for the energy transition – the Viennese approach
The city of Vienna and its wholly-owned energy provider are testing a range of participatory approaches to meet the city’s decarbonisation goals. From sustainable urban planning, through geothermal engineering to blockchain technology, Vienna is contributing new ideas and sustainable solutions for the city of tomorrow.
A democratic transition to renewable energy in Cádiz
As in many other Spanish cities, two new left parties (For Cádiz Yes We Can and Winning Cádiz) took over the local government of Cádiz in an unprecedented election in May 2015. They inherited many economic and social problems such as high levels of debt and unemployment.
Barcelona Energía: public power to tackle energy poverty and achieve energy sovereignty
The Barcelona Energy Agency (AEB) is a public consortium that consists of a number of authorities that are directly involved in managing energy and the environment: Barcelona City Council, Barcelona Metropolitan Area, the Catalan Energy Institute, the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the Polytechnic University of Catalonia. AEB aims to boost the city’s reputation as a benchmark city in terms of promoting energy saving and energy efficiency, and enhancing knowledge about and the use of renewable energy.
The ‘smart’ transformation of a Black Sea metropolis
Burgas has recently been named the ‘Best city to live in Bulgaria’ – which may just have something to do with its strategy of transforming itself into a climate-friendly city without leaving any of its residents behind. The implementation of the municipality’s action plan 2014-2020, designed to set Burgas on a path towards becoming an inclusive ‘smart’ metropolis, has already changed the face of the city’s residential buildings and upgraded its transport system.
Financial innovation, ‘smart grids’ and one-stop shops: Aradippou’s ambitious journey towards net carbon-neutrality
Aradippou is driving an ambitious local energy transition by engaging local actors as well as national and European partners. The municipality aspires to establish one-stop shops that provide comprehensive solutions for homeowners, encouraging them to engage in upscaling renewable energy projects and increasing energy efficiency. The municipal projects also aim to unleash financial and technological capacity to establish a ‘smart grid’. Involvement in various European projects is allowing the city to access European funds and partnerships which will equip it to reach net carbon-neutrality by 2030.
“There were evenings when we almost gave up.”
How did the Mouscron energy cooperative come into being and what are its plans for the near future? In December, Energy Cities met with Emmanuel Fontaine who is both the City of Mouscron’s energy adviser and one of the cooperative’s trustees. He told us about the long, but enriching process that led to the creation of this unique energy cooperative. According to this cheerful Belgian, with a clear passion for his work, such a project requires perseverance, tenacity and strong motivation. Below is a shortened version of the interview. You can also download and listen to the unabridged conversation by clicking on the link on this page.
Amsterdam empowers citizens to co-create a sustainable city of the future
The municipality of Amsterdam is looking for new ways to incorporate direct democracy into its fight to cut carbon emissions. Its Amsterdam Climate Accord sets out a goal of reducing CO2 emissions by 95% compared with emission levels in 1990.[i] To achieve this, the city plans to focus on its buildings, traffic and electricity sectors.
Niš embarks on a democratic energy transition journey
The city of Niš recognises the potential that democratic decision-making has in terms of bringing about an ambitious energy transition focused on fighting energy poverty. All the relevant actors are now working together on the transition, bridging initial differences of opinion about democratic ownership models and the need to access external resources. By integrating road maps and action plans with a long-term vision, Niš has become a pilot city and role model for other cities in the region.