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Political brief: "From progressive minority to critical mass"

By Claire Roumet on 6 June 2019









Claire Roumet

Right after the EU elections, this title might be confusing. Indeed, it does not refer to the new EU Parliament, but to the legacy of the last 5 years. There are so many articles about the new impossible equilibrium between antagonist political forces, and what will emerge is so difficult to actually predict that I’d rather come back on what has been achieved.

And from a “local energy transition” perspective, the less we can say I that the new legal, political and EU financing landscape is in place. It is now possible to go from the pioneers and most advanced cities to embark the “progressive minority”. And it is for the next decade to come to go from the progressive minority to the critical mass.

Between 2014 and 2019, the European Commission proposed, and the EU Parliament and Council adopted, new rules that are of absolute necessity for the roll-out of the energy transition, opening the energy markets to local actors and paving the way to decentralised production, storage and distribution. It also upgraded the transport directives fostering wide development of electric and “soft” mobility, set the requirements for Long Term Strategies for building renovation and increased the EU energy efficiency objectives.

Equally importantly, the Governance of the Energy Union offers a blueprint for renewed policy making across the EU. The legislation recognised the synergies and links between climate and energy planning, and proposes a unique tool to build consensus and a strategic vision by all stakeholders. The Covenant of Mayors is a key initiative on which to build on the dialogue.

Taking stock is important as well as thanking all EU leaders that fought hard for this energy revolution to happen. In the future, municipalities should finally be able to play their roles for the local transition.
It is interesting also to do a “check against delivery” exercise with the agenda we proposed five years ago and to see that almost all our demands have been addressed.

So… boarding completed.

Now the next destination is quite clear: to transform these new EU rules into reality and use their full potential to revitalise local economies, all EU policies need to empower local actors to take advantage of the regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union. Otherwise, as many other directives or good concepts, it will fail its objective and get lost in transition. To avoid that we developed a clear route-map for the new EU leaders.

And what is interesting with the new EU Parliament is that any decision will require complex coalitions. There are enough political forces for Europe to offer a future to the next generations.

There is a progressive minority to lead us to critical mass!

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Events to come
EU Sustainable Energy Week
From 17 to 21 June

Covenant of Mayors training on project financing
Monday 17 June

Capacity-building workshop - Providing energy retrofit packages to private homeowners – business models and project implementation
Wednesday 19 June

10 years of ELENA - Supporting investments in energy efficiency and sustainable transport
Thursday 20 June 15:30-18:30

Designing smart and efficient energy policies with citizens
Friday 21 June 13:30-16:30

Rénovation énergétique des bâtiments et ensembles d’immeubles - Voyage d’étude, région de Lille
From 25 to 26 June

All coming events >>
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You are here: Energy Cities, Local authorities in energy transition. > Newsletters > Newsletter - Energy Cities - en > 273 - June 2019

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