Sustainable Energy Communities and Sustainable Development

Few countries are on schedule to meet the 12% renewable energy target for 2010 set out in the Renewables Directive, and others set for the rational use of energy (RUE), combined heat and power (CHP) and clean energy for transport (CET) are also proving difficult to meet.

Local action and resources are indispensable to achieve the Community's targets, and there are a number of drivers that should be encouraging local action on sustainable energy in the EU and Accession States, including decentralisation of government,
Local Agenda 21 and energy sector liberalisation. However, there are clearly obstacles to transforming these drivers into the activity that is needed to make sustainable energy happen in all our communities.

For the benefits of sustainable energy to be realised, there is a clear need to understand the critical success factors for mobilisation of local governments and key stakeholders (private sector, NGOs, etc.). It is important to identify what factors are at work when sustainable energy is successfully incorporated into local strategic and development plans so that this can demonstrated to other communities.

To obtain this information, the SusCom project will be undertaking twenty one case studies in communities in seven countries across Europe.

SusCom is funded under the European Comission's Altener and SAVE Programmes (DG TREN).
The project began in January 2003 and will continue until December 2004.

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