Establish cross departmental links to avoid silo mentality
From Energy Cities Wiki
Energy and climate are considered serious topics by local authorities who are now aware of their importance. However, sectoral policies seem to be playing different scores. They sometimes continue to obey their own goals and habits inherited from the past, which act as obstacles, preventing common objectives from being reached.
The natural trend is to seek an optimum within one’s own area of expertise: urban planning, housing, economics, etc. This is perfectly normal, but we can no longer accept such behaviour as the addition of sectoral optima never produces collective harmony.
Interactions between areas and the relations between stakeholders are now what matter. We have to work in a more systemic way and each sectoral policy has to contribute to energy transition at its own level. This requires new know-how and practices, that is, a new culture.
Make the energy transition a cross-cutting objective applicable to all the local authority’s sectoral policies. Each department – economic, social, urban planning, transport, highways, health, housing, etc. – will have to integrate energy into their strategies. This approach may go against old habits but each sectoral policy will benefit from it in the end. And it can be considered as a success when the whole municipal budget is a transition vector, thus making specific transition budgets unnecessary.
• Preparing an energy transition action plan common to all sectoral policies approved by the Council and co-ordinated by the Mayor.
• Involving the various municipal departments in the preparation of the Plan by getting them to make proposals for reaching the energy and climate objectives.
• Applying this cross-cutting approach to elected representatives as well as technical and administrative departments.
Mulhouse Alsace Agglomération, France
No Climate Plan budget but a Climate Plan for the budget!
Mulhouse metropolitan council’s energy and climate plan is perceived by its implementers as a great opportunity to unite all stakeholders within the Alsatian metropolitan area - starting with metropolitan counsellors and administrative departments who have to work in close collaboration using adapted tools and means around a common project. The necessary synergy between these players also involves sharing a common methodology for monitoring, assessing and sharing results. An observatory board, composed of elected representatives, experts and representatives from the civil society and centralising all data relating to the actions implemented (contents, allocated budgets, price indicators, timetables, carbon footprint wherever possible, etc.), has been set up to assess the results obtained and to propose strategies.
1.7 million inhabitants
A cross-departmental Sustainable Energy Action Plan
In its Sustainable Energy Action Plan - SEAP, the City of Barcelona acknowledges that energy issues affect almost every aspect of the city life. That is why they require “the complicity of many city sectors” to achieve the objectives set in the framework of the Covenant of Mayors.
In light of this, Barcelona’s SEAP is intended to work “transversally together with other plans of the Barcelona City Council”, such as the urban mobility plan, the green spaces plan, etc. Such synergies help define the most consistent municipal strategy possible, taking into account a large range of sectors including buildings and equipment, vehicle fleets, public lighting, and any public infrastructure or service.
For each sector, energy consumption data was collected with the crucial help of various council departments in order to best assess what efficiency improvements could be undertaken.
Greater Lyon, France
1.3 million inhabitants
Cross-cutting working groups for energy
To set the course of its Sustainable Energy Action Plan, Greater Lyon initiated the co-production of scenarios for a low carbon agglomeration by 2020. These scenarios were put forward on the occasion of an “energy and climate conference”, bringing together five key types of actors from the industry/ energy production sector, from the tertiary sector, from civil society, from institutions and from public or private research institutes. The scenarios were developed sector by sector by a cross-cutting panel of experts organised in working groups (housing, transport, business, energy and behaviour change) co-moderated by a Vice-President of Greater Lyon and a partner organisation, and reflecting proposals from municipalities and citizens.