How to ensure a fair energy transition? Sun4All contributed to the International Annual Conference on Energy Poverty

26 September 2023

How to ensure a fair energy transition? Sun4All contributed to the International Annual Conference on Energy Poverty

The International Annual Conference on Energy Poverty, held on 19-20 September 2023, in Warsaw, Poland, marked a significant gathering dedicated to combating energy poverty and advancing sustainable solutions at the local level. This annual event is organised by the Energy Poverty Advisory Hub (EPAH) and the Directorate-General for Energy (DG ENER) of the European Commission, in collaboration with the City of Warsaw and with support from the Committee of the Regions and the Polish Network Energie-Cités (PNEC).

During this conference, experts and stakeholders from various sectors convened to discuss critical issues related to energy poverty. Notably, Jurijs Grizans, Officer in Sustainable Energy Planning and Carbon Reporting at ICLEI Europe, shared Sun4All´s experience during the parallel session titled "The role of energy communities: Structural obstacles and benefits for vulnerable consumers." The subsequent discussion delved into lessons learnt from the Sun4All project, with case studies from Lumiar Civil Parish (Portugal) and the Getafe City Council (Spain).

Addressing energy poverty is a top social policy priority in the European Union, and various initiatives are underway to empower vulnerable households and promote renewables and energy efficiency. The Sun4All project plays a pivotal role in this endeavour by offering not only financial support but also non-financial assistance. This includes advice on efficient energy consumption, energy management education, workshops on energy rights and energy efficiency, and opportunities to learn about photovoltaic systems and renewable energy.

As Grizans emphasised, "The current practice shows that many households don't participate in the energy transition for reasons such as lack of access to information, difficulties in accessing financial means, and varying types of house ownership. One of the main goals of the Sun4All project is to engage and empower vulnerable households by showing them that energy communities can help them benefit from renewable energy."

In summary, the Sun4All project highlights the importance of raising awareness among local authorities and stakeholders about tools and approaches to address energy poverty, which can be a significant barrier to achieving a just energy transition in Europe. Collaboration among cities to share experiences and best practices in engaging and empowering vulnerable households is vital. Sun4All's inclusive approach, tailored financial support, and capacity-building initiatives are key components of its mission to combat energy poverty and promote a fair and sustainable energy transition across Europe.

Grizans took the opportunity to promote the Sun4All Capacity Building and Knowledge Sharing Programme, inviting all interested stakeholders to become Sun4All replicators and join the effort to combat energy poverty through renewable energy solutions.
To learn more and participate in the Sun4All Capacity Building and Knowledge Sharing Programme and its upcoming study visits, interested parties are invited to fill in a contact form or to contact via email.

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This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement N°101032239.