11 March 2020
A Win-Win(d) situation – together with SMARTEES
On February 27 - 28, 2020 the Environmental Policy Research Center of Freie Universität Berlin and ICLEI Europe jointly organized the conference "Achieving a Win-Win(d) - Socially-Inclusive Wind Energy across Europe”.
The conference marked the conclusion of the Horizon 2020 project WinWind with a presentation of the project results and suggestions for replicable measures to enhance acceptance of wind energy projects. SMARTEES also presented the exemplary approaches of its project islands Samsø and El Hierro on citizen mobilization in renewable energy initiatives.
The conference explored future prospects of citizen participation in the wind energy transition. Discussions included how opportunities for participation should not be limited to the planning stages, but also entail co-ownership and economic benefits. In this regard introducing “prosumer”-models could result in both regional autonomy and cost-effectiveness, especially when compared to large-scale projects. It is also crucial to take into account behavioural aspects such as sharing benefits, fostering a sense of belonging, participatory design and knowledge creation in fostering citizen inclusion in the wind energy sector. Further, the inclusion of Renewable Energy Communities in the European Union Renewable Energy Directive is likely to boost citizen involvement in the coming years. Last but not least - the conference´s final plenary emphasised the need for political will to create frameworks to facilitate decentralized citizen-led wind energy transition.
The conference closed with the signing of three important cooperation agreements between project partners from cities and energy agencies to continue with processes initiated within the framework of WinWind.
To support transitions towards socially inclusive energy systems SMARTEES is developing a Policy Sandbox Tool, to help policymakers simulate policy scenarios with the help of agent-based models. Stay tuned!
For more information on WindWind, please click here.