25 August 2019
Interreg MED Renewable Energy Community

 

By Alexia Boulanger1; Danilo Ceh2; Cynthia Echave3 and Jennifer Shaw-Taberlet4

Summer 2019


Energy transition will mark the political agenda for the next years in the EU Members States, not only by the commitments achieved, but also by the urgency of Climate Change hazards. The Mediterranean Region acquires a relevant role for its vulnerability to rise of temperatures, sea level rise and scarcity of water and resources. Energy supply is one of the priorities for Europe, and most of the efforts should be oriented on renewables as the principal energy source option to support.

EU Projects represent an opportunity to be oriented on renewables and to bring new ideas and initiatives not only at scientific field but also for economy, social and territorial development. In the current programming period, the Interreg MED Programme organizes its architecture into eight Thematic Communities grouped as well in three axes: 1) Innovation; 2) Low Carbon Economy; and 3) Natural and cultural resources.

The Renewable Energy Community forms part of the Low Carbon Economy axe and it is constituted by six “Modular” Projects and one “Horizontal project, managing the community. The MED RES Community is formed by more than 115 institutions, 57 regions divided among 10 EU Member states and 3 countries from the instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance, all around the Mediterranean Sea. The common objective of the community members is fostering low-carbon strategies and energy efficiency in the MED territory and particularly, to increase the share of renewable local energy sources in the energy mix strategies and plans of MED islands and rural areas. These activities in this framework have been organized through six different projects:

LOCAL4GREEN – "LOCAL Policies for GREEN Energy", supports local authorities in the design and implementation of innovative fiscal policies, intended to promote the use of RES both in the public and private sector. These local fiscal policies are implemented in 75 pilot municipalities, located in the rural territories and islands of the MED region. (https://local4green.interreg-med.eu/).

StoRES – "Promotion of higher penetration of distributed PV through storage for all", main goal is development of an optimal policy for the effective integration of photovoltaics (PV) and energy storage systems (ESS), via testing smart solutions in MED islands and rural areas. This project aims to increase PV penetration in the energy mix of islands and rural areas in the MED, by integrating PV and ESS, under an optimal market policy by removing the constraints of grid reliability and RES intermittency. (https://stores.interreg-med.eu/).

COMPOSE – "Rural Communities engaged with positive energy", contributes to an increased sustainable RES planning capacity at the decision-making and planningexpert levels. The project main objective is to promote new business models and technology development to compose green economy model thanks to the connection of local potentials to sustainable energy supply chains. By promoting the development of local business, in combination with the development of local added value chains, it provides a RES development planning synthesis model and therefore the increase of renewable energy mix in selected areas. (https://compose.interreg-med.eu/).

PRISMI – "Promoting RES integration for smart Mediterranean islands", aims to support local authorities of MED islands in planning their transition towards a low carbon and climate change resilient energy systems in a cost-effective way. To do so, PRISMI developed an integrated toolkit to assess and map RES distribution for the targeted elaboration of energy scenarios and technoeconomic feasibility analysis. Moreover, a network has been established in order to power up the ambitious transition. (https://prismi.interreg-med.eu/).

PEGASUS – "Promoting Effective Generation and Sustainable Uses of electricity", is a cooperation project where a group of public and private bodies, involved in the energy sector, try to design the business model of the microgrids in the coming future power system. The goal is being achieved through the simulation, in several sites, of the microgrid behaviour and interaction of its members: consumers, prosumers (PROducer and conSUMER) and prosumers (producer, consumer and storage). (https://pegasus.interreg-med.eu/).

Forbioenergy – "Forest Bioenergy in the Protected Mediterranean Areas", develops innovative planning tools and operating procedures aimed to exploit the full potential of biomass in protected areas, by reducing the barriers that hinder the development of the bioenergy and at the same time, preserving the biodiversity of the natural areas. Project actions are implemented through a participatory and shared process that involves public and private key actors. (https://forbioenergy.interreg-med.eu/).

 

All the instruments and actions developed during the MED RES Community projects, have a high replicability potential. For that purpose, the Community proposes a common merging approach based on the complementarities of the projects results. The aim is to drive the capitalization of their tools and methodologies through a strategic planning and management tool based on an ecosystemic approach. So that is born the concept of Ecosystemic Transition Units (ETUs). An ETU should ensure a set of basic components that will allow to obtain the application to green fiscal policies and subsidies in order to accelerate the energy self-sufficiency, job creation and social development of a territory. The basic components are classified in four groups: energy community; energy planning; energy facilities and energy governance.

With the objective to take into account the needs and will of the Interreg MED local territories, the RES Community is organizing 6 regional consultations, to consensus the concept and build a common denomination of "Ecosystemic Transition Units" at MED/EU level. The consultations will include all the relevant stakeholders related to Renewable Energy and territorial planning of 6 Interreg MED countries: Spain, France, Italy, Slovenia, Greece and Bosnia-Herzegovina. The shared and consolidated results of these consultations will allow creating dedicated policy papers that will be presented at EU level.

Consequently, the creation of the ETUs, will be a fundamental tool and revitalization guideline, allowing to spread much more the projects tools, results and conclusions and to reach policy makers, local authorities and specific target groups, permitting the major inclusion of RES in the future plans and strategies. Local level and bottom-up strategies will grow and push for the enhancement of technologies and solutions based on RES in the energy plans and strategies of the MED area islands and rural areas.


[1] A. Boulangeris with Environment Park, via Livorno, 60, 10144 Turin, Italy. Email: alexia.boulanger@envipark.com
[2] D. Ceh is with Scientific Research Centre Bistra Ptuj, Slovenski trg 6, 2250 Ptuj, Slovenia. Email: danilo.ceh@bistra.si
[3] C. Echave is with Urban Ecology Agency of Barcelona, 08001 Barcelona Spain. Email: cynthiaechave@bcnecologia.net
[4] J. Shaw-Taberlet is with Axelera, Rond-point de l’échangeur – Les Levées, 69360 Solaize, France. Email: jennifer.shaw-taberlet@axelera.org


Contact details:
Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče
Bistra Ptuj
Scientific Research Centre Bistra Ptuj
Slovenski trg 6, SI - 2250 Ptuj - Slovenia
Tel: +386 2 748 02 68
Web: www.bistra.si