The power of community energy – successes from Utrecht and the importance of connections for local energy

The growing need to minimize the effects of climate change is felt by people worldwide. Drastic steps must be taken to reduce CO2 emissions. Fossil fuels must be replaced by sustainable, renewable alternatives.

In 2015, 193 world leaders adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), an agenda of 17 ambitious goals to work on sustainable development, to be reached by 2030. A part of this is generating sustainable, affordable, energy. To achieve an inclusive energy transition, citizens must be more involved. They are therefore increasingly taking matters into their own hands. They organize themselves in collective associations to generate their own clean energy and to save energy. In this involvement and cooperation you will find the power of community energy.
WECF wants to emphasize the importance of local initiatives in the transition to sustainable energy. A great deal of knowledge and experience on this topic is available in the city of Utrecht (NL), which we have collected in this publication, after studying three existing energy cooperatives. The lessons that can be learned from the experiences of energy cooperatives based in Utrecht, may also be relevant for other countries. For this reason, this information is also made available for local initiatives elsewhere in the world.

The need for this has become clear from the demand of our partners in Georgia. A few energy cooperatives are currently active here, but they are not as successful as the ones in the Netherlands. By publishing this research and sharing this knowledge, we contribute to the realization of various Sustainable Development Goals.

The publication in Dutch can be found here