Urban transition-makers in Brest

Brest Métropole gets ready to work with citizens for the energy, climate and societal transition


The metropolitan government of Brest is getting ready to organise a first major event dedicated to the involvement of local players and citizens in the transition at the end of November. How? Read more and find out!

This article was written by the transition team of Brest Metropolitan Area, one of our partners in the TOMORROW Project.

After drawing up its Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan (SECAP) in 2019, Brest Métropole, with its 8 municipalities (215,000 inhabitants), wanted to take a step forward and focus on collective mobilisation for the energy, climate and societal transition.

Since the spring of 2020 and despite the difficulties related to the COVID crisis, the Brest Transition Team has been meeting to lay the foundations for a mobilisation strategy. In order to reach out to players from a variety of sectors and with different backgrounds, the city has called on many internal departments and partners from the economic, institutional, associative, cultural, academic and civil society worlds. The first workshops created a great deal of energy in the group, which worked on identifying stakeholders, key messages and planning the first stages of the mobilisation activities. These meetings were also an opportunity for the team to exchange and to analyse the transition dynamics in the area.

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Thanks to this process, Brest learnt that many local actors are already sensitive and committed to actions in favour of the energy transition: many activities and initiatives are already implemented, but they are not linked nor promoted enough. The metropolitan government will take advantage of the mobilisation activities planned in the framework of TOMORROW to capitalise on the commitment of the local actors and to facilitate collective dynamics of cooperation in its territory.

Glen Dissaux, elected representative of the city of Brest and new vice-president of the metropolitan government is following the project very closely. He is in charge of the Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan, the local COP and 2030 Agenda and believes TOMORROW will provide real added value: “We are all aware that we must jointly set high targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It is our collective responsibility, as elected representatives, citizens and economic players in the region, to make strong commitments and to keep them. Our climate plan is very proactive in this respect. The main key to the success of all these policies, which are necessary on a global scale, is the widest possible mobilisation. We must involve as many actors as possible in this formidable human challenge. I personally believe very much in the strength of networks: we must exchange, we must join local, regional, national, European and international networks to compare our practices, to inspire each other and to find a global meaning to our local actions. This is the meaning of our involvement in the TOMORROW project and in the network Energy Cities.”

Credits: Brest Metropole

In order to mark an initial key moment and to present the project, the local transition team intends to take advantage of Brest’s annual gathering on the energy transition: the “Village Climat Déclic”, an event dedicated to citizens that will take place on 28 and 29 November 2020. The evening before,companies, municipalities, associations, institutions and researchers in the area will be brought together to share the actions that they are already carrying out and their expectations. Brest Métropole will also present the participatory methods they plan to use in the months to come.

After this first meeting, the Transition Team and the elected officials will continue their reflections to enrich the approach gradually, by applying one of the principles of transition governance: “learning by doing”.