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Preparing the way for energy alternatives

Jul 21, 2017

On July 10-11, 2017, energy planning practitioners from Ukrainian municipalities and international energy modelling experts gathered in Kyiv for a workshop on how local authorities can use and benefit from advanced and simple energy planning and modelling tools and methodologies.

The “Tools and Methodologies for Municipal Sustainable Energy Planning” was organised by the Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (REC) in partnership with the Institute for Economics and Forecasting of Ukraine (IEF), in the framework “Local Initiatives for Sustainable Ukraine (LINK)”, a REC-led project supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment. The aim of the workshop was to increase the capacity of local authorities to use energy planning tools for sustainable energy planning, and thus facilitating a smooth transition to a low carbon economy.

The workshop kicked off with opening remarks from Svitlana Grynchuk, Director of the Climate Change and Ozone Layer Protection Department, Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine. Grynchuk emphasised the importance of local-level energy planning in terms of ensuring Ukraine’s overall energy sustainability. Next, the LINK project team and representatives of the IEF explained the main idea behind the workshop, namely: to improve the capacity of Ukrainian municipalities in using relevant energy planning tools for sustainable energy planning.

Eduardas Kazakevicius, Head of the Climate, Mobility and Low Emission Development Unit at the REC, and Zorica Korac, LINK project manager, presented the workshop programme and introduced the speakers to follow. Alexander Ochs, Managing Director of SD Strategies and Chair of the LEDS-GP Energy Working Group, brought participants up to date on “sustainable energy roadmaps” — powerful tools that encompass the key components for designing a comprehensive sectoral strategy.

Following the presentation, delegates from municipalities and international experts joined for a panel discussion on strategic energy planning processes in Ukraine and on energy policy planning at regional and municipal levels, with a focus on current and future trends. Later in the day, Charles Heaps, a senior scientist at SEI-US, spoke about long-range energy alternatives planning systems (LEAPS), while modelling experts from E4SMA, Rocco de Miglio and Alessandro Chiodi, talked about integrated planning frameworks through the EU FP7 InSmart project to assist in developing sustainable and resilient cities. Roman Podolets, from the Institute for Economics and Forecasting Ukraine, together with several Ukrainian experts and representatives of Ukrainian cities and institutions, discussed energy planning, challenges and opportunities in a Ukrainian context.

On the second day of the workshop, attention was devoted to the application of tools and methodologies in practice. Participants were grouped according to their experience in using simple or advanced tools for energy planning, leading to a discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of different tools. Anna Sikharulidze from the Sustainable Development Centre “Remissia”, and technical manager of the EC-LEDS project, moderated the session for beginners, drawing from the example of small municipalities in Georgia that have benefited from using simple tools. In parallel, a session was held for advanced users focusing on integrated energy action plans for a sustainable transition to low carbon economy.

The workshop finished with five working groups presenting their findings on technical and institutional readiness for supporting low carbon transition in their municipalities. Eduardas Kazakevicius coordinated the wrap-up session, which the REC can use for tailoring future capacity building actions aimed at raising the capacities of local energy planners.

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