The EU is soon expected to draft the outline of its next budget – the 2021-2027 Multi-Annual Financial Framework – in a context where its unity and stability have been shaken by the Brexit and are further put into question by regional tensions within its member states, with the recent example of the Catalonian crisis. Making Europe more united, but also stronger and more democratic, as per President Juncker’s recent commitment, is thus becoming a pressing challenge which should guide the orientations of the future budget.
This paper sketches a creative policy vision for how the next EU budget could best unlock innovative financing and address specific barriers faced by energy citizens and community power projects wishing to invest in their own small scale renewable energy projects.
The contribution of cities and regions in reaching the European climate and energy targets is already significant. Yet, much more is possible with an enabling, stable and ambitious policy framework and effective access to financing. A strong Effort Sharing Regulation – without loopholes – can support and incentivise the uptake, replication and upscaling of local climate and energy actions. Creating the right conditions to enable climate efforts to propel will moreover lead to numerous co-benefits and a better quality of life for the millions of urban residents.
The Energy Union must be an opportunity to accelerate the energy transition and define the roles, rights and responsibilities of the new actors who are its main protagonists. Energy Cities makes recommendations to European decision-makers to support this local momentum through the five pillars of the Energy Union: # 1 decarbonisation, # 2 energy security, # 3 internal market, # 4 energy efficiency and # 5 research and development innovation.
Energy Cities and other organisations committed to a sustainable energy transition urge the EU Commission to seize the opportunity to deliver an ambitious reform of EU energy markets and put the EU on a course to a brighter, cleaner future.
The governance of the grand Energy Union project is the framework through which Member States will be expected to report on the achievement of the 2030 climate and energy targets as well as associated policy design. What role will and should be given to local authorities within this context? Can we still rely on old decision-making architectures when while moving to the future, decentralised energy system? In this publication, Energy Cities provides some possible guidance and orientations on how to revisit the governance framework based on a “think local first” approach.
Energy Cities joins forces with industry associations representing the geothermal, solar thermal, heat pump, biomass, biogas, and district heating and cooling sectors to require structural reforms in EU climate and energy legislation, taking full account of the EU Heating and Cooling Strategy
Energy Cities welcomes the Commission’s initiative to launch a public consultation process on a new energy market design, notably as it aims at establishing a market that can fully integrate the increasing share of local renewable energy. A new market design that puts local renewable energy at its core will reduce costs, guarantee security of supply and foster innovation, sustainability and economic growth. […]
Our dedicated team monitors and shapes policy developments according to local authorities’ needs and priorities.
Our advocacy involves:
The cities behind our network set the tone and shape the European energy transition agenda. Whereas a municipality alone has little influence, together we can make local authorities’ voices heard at national and European level.
As part of the European Covenant of Mayors movement, cities and towns are taking energy and climate action to secure a better future for their citizens. With over 8,000 signatories, it has become a real political force proposing to renew the European project through local action. The initiative is an important political instrument for Energy Cities, as we initiated the movement and have been co-leading the Covenant of Mayors European Office since 2008.