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Match local vision and European budget !

By David Donnerer, Jana Cicmanova on 4 July 2017

Matching local vision and ambition with appropriate and adequate financing is a major challenge for cities engaged in the energy transition.

At the European Sustainable Energy Week 2017 in Brussels, Energy Cities and its partners jointly called for the European institutions and investors to put local climate action at the core of their financial frameworks and investment strategies.
Four cities including two Energy Cities ‘members – Utrecht and Parma – presented the recommendations for accelerating the clean energy transition:

  • Develop non-thematic financing platforms and solutions to enable cities work at system scale
  • Better support the implementation of local energy renovation programmes through the European Structural and Investment Funds
  • Further adapt support schemes to local realities with a small scale technical assistance facility
  • Amend Energy Union legislation to support better the role of renewable energy cooperatives


These recommendations come at a crucial time, as the European Union is currently in the process of rethinking how it will spend its funds in the future. In 2018, the European Commission will propose a new European budget for the period post-2020, which is bound to be smaller in volume as the United Kingdom exits the EU. And just recently, on June 28th, the EU Commission put forward a reflection paper on the future of EU finances (White paper).

In this paper, the Commission laid out 5 scenarios for the future of EU funding:
1- “Carrying on”: a business-as-usual scenario, where the EU sticks to its current funding priorities (Agriculture, Cohesion Policy) but encourages more use of financial instruments
2- “Doing less together”: EU funds would get cut radically, in particular on Cohesion Policy, Agriculture and Education
3- “Some Member States do more”: a few ambitious Member States are encouraged to go forward and pool funds for joint projects
4- “Radical redesign”: focusing EU funding on priorities with “very high added EU value”, which would entail a stronger focus on smart grids, transport and e-mobility to boost the clean energy transition
5- “Doing much more together”: the most ambitious scenario, where a significantly higher EU budget would notably bring much more funding for reinforced territorial cooperation & urban dimension in Cohesion Policy.

Energy Cities welcomes these proposals, and encourages the EU Commission to opt for a scenario that reflects a strong support to the locally driven energy transition and strengthens urban and territorial cooperation across the EU!

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Union of Communities of Armenia (AM) Armenia | Agencia de Energia & Ambiente da Arrabida - Energy agency Portugal | Mariupol Ukraine | Cities Northern Netherlands (NL) Belgium | Lisboa e-nova - Energy agency Portugal
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Eliminating Energy Poverty Across Europe: Monitoring Progress for an Inclusive Energy Union
Tuesday 5 September 10:00-16:30

The Power of Heat: A consumer-led energy transition
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Top Dutch Festival / Networkparty : eat-meet-enjoy-repeat
Tuesday 10 October

EWCR 2017 - The Covenant of Mayors Community: Coordinated local action as a blueprint for national policy frameworks
Tuesday 10 October 14:30-17:00

Energy Info Days 2017
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Leadership for the future - Cities as Leaders for Global Sustainable Development
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