EUROCITIES on COP 21: Citizens invest in renewable energy in Eindhoven

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  • environment
date
04-08-2015

Encouraging citizens to invest in renewable energy is helping Eindhoven reach its target of becoming energy neutral by 2045.

With Eindhoven’s goal of becoming energy neutral by 2045, it recognises that getting citizens on board is an important part of the transition. The city is encouraging its citizens to participate in renewable energy cooperatives by supporting these cooperatives and providing information on how they work and how to join.

One successful example in Eindhoven is ‘MorgenGroeneEnergie’ (Green Energy Tomorrow). Founded in 2011 in a neighbouring city, the cooperative has expanded its membership and now covers several neighbouring cities, including Eindhoven. Members produce the energy they consume through small scale renewable energy plants. The profits or margins from the energy production are used to keep members’ energy bills down and fund new renewable energy projects.

Eindhoven works closely with this cooperative to enable its citizens to take an active role in the supply and production of their energy. For example, it offered up the roof of a community centre in the Blixembosch neighbourhood, where residents installed solar panels which could be bought individually to provide households with energy.

Projects are financed by cooperative members, but the city supports the projects by providing public roofs for free and facilitating the sharing of experience. For example, the city financed the production of a manual describing the experiences of the Blixembosch project. Members also benefit from tax reductions for cooperatively produced renewable energy.

The project is an important example of how a city can support and motivate its residents to generate their own sustainable energy with minimal financial input from the city itself. Read more about the project in a CASCADE case study, available here. Links to the various projects are provided in the case study. 

 

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