The IERC (International Energy Research Centre) at Tyndall National Institute, UCC has been awarded €2M in Horizon 2020 funding to lead a 3-year Citizen Engagement and Energy Collective Action project. This project aims to develop a standard framework for the growth of energy communities. As part of this, it will facilitate citizen participation in the transition from a ‘consumer-market’ to a ‘prosumer-market’.
Professor Brian Norton, Head of Energy Research at Tyndall National Institute commented at the project launch, saying
“Organising energy communities and active participation of citizens is critical to accelerate the energy transition process. This project will develop a framework that will include not only technology advice for local energy communities, but also innovative collective business models and recommendations to address policy and regulatory challenges.”
“The project will cover five pilots in different participating countries with differences in climate, culture, energy policy and government incentives in those countries,” said IERC Senior Energy Policy Analyst Piyush Verma. “The pilot will target to engage 10,000 citizens, enable €66M in energy project investments, and primary energy savings of around 21GWh per year during the project’s lifetime.”
The project will train implementation champions on key topics including behaviour change, prosumerism, collective actions and their benefit to consumers, and what it means to become an energy citizen in a sustainable energy community. These Champions will act as local energy experts closely working with local authorities and providing advice to local citizens and communities.
“Consumers will be able to get one-on-one advice about refurbishment, energy efficiency, energy sustainability, and using solar and renewables through a one stop shop digital platform planned to be developed under the project,” explained Vanda Barsic, Project Coordinator for this project at IERC. “The information will be tailored to each individual household but when Implementation Champions notice a lot of similar queries, the programme will be able to develop purchase services, installations and materials collectively.”
The project will run under the EU partnership banner of UP-STAIRS, which stands for Uplifting Communities: Structuring collective action for sustainable local transition and identifying regulatory solutions for adopting frontier technologies and disruptive business models. Initial pilot locations are City of Cork, Ireland; Barcelona Metropolitan Area, Catalonia, Spain; Brunnthal, Bavaria, Germany; Upper Austria Region, Austria; and the Municipality of Asenovgrad, Bulgaria. The project was launched on 30th September, 2020.
More details can be found on the EU website here.
About Tyndall National Institute
Tyndall is a leading European research centre in integrated ICT (Information and Communications Technology) materials, devices and systems. It is one of Ireland’s five National Labs, specialising in both electronics and photonics. Tyndall works with industry and academia to transform research into products in its core market areas of electronics, communications, energy, health, agri-tech & the environment. With a network of over 200 industry partners and customers worldwide, they are focused on delivering human and economic impact from excellence in research. A research flagship of University College Cork, Tyndall is home to a research community of 600 people of 52 nationalities.
For more information on Tyndall please contact:
Ursula Morrish, Marketing and Communications Manager,
Tyndall National Institute,
+353 (0) 852372189