The FEDARENE, European Federation of Agencies and Regions for Energy and the Environment, handed over the trophy of the second edition of its Roger Léron Award on the evening of June 15th at the magnificent Palace of the Academies in Brussels.
The Roger Léron Award celebrates successful contributions to the development of sustainable energy at the regional and/or local levels in the European Union. It aims to acknowledge persistency, positive attitude, a proactive approach and successful implementation of various projects.
The jury had to make a tough call, but in the end, the selected winner was Wolfgang Jilek (Austria).
After several years of being one of the Managers of the Styrian Energy Agency, M. Jilek became Energy Commissioner of Styria until he retired last summer. He updated the Styrian Energy Strategy, targeting efficiency, RES, district heating and cogeneration, founding rural cooperatives to operate heat plants.
Even after retirement, M. Jilek kept working for an association for the “Training of Energy Consultants”, of which he was elected chairperson and asked to stay. He is also still active in the Concerted Action on the Energy Performance of Buildings.
The evening also celebrated the outstanding contributions of the 3 other nominees:
- Hans Gulliksson (Sweden) created the regional Energy Agency for Southeast Sweden where he worked as senior adviser. He also created and managed the organisations of Miljoresurs Linne (non-profit organisation for sustainable development) and Bioenergigruppen (organisation for R&D in biofuel heating plants, emission reduction), supporting public authorities and politicians towards a sustainable development, from very technical projects to awareness-raising of citizens.
- The Regional Natural Park of Luberon (France) works on energy efficiency and the development of renewable energy, assisting local authorities on these subjects. Its main achievement is to have developed, since 2009, a team of energy technicians, who are sharing their time between 40 municipalities of Luberon, following public energy consumptions and expenses, tracking potential savings, and proposing measures to save energy.
- Late Marc Théry (France) worked as a consultant on the energy issues of businesses and territories. He became the architect of the energy approach taken by the Municipality “Le Mené”, small territory in Brittany, France, which targets energy autonomy by mobilizing all of its potential resources in RES. Unfortunately, Mr. Théry passed away last March. He will be deeply regretted for his human as well as for his professional qualities. That is why the jury decided that Mr. Théry deserved a special Jury award, which was accepted by his lovely widow Jacqueline and Mr. Aignel, Mayor of the Municipality of Le Mené.
The Roger Léron Award, created in 2015, is awarded every year to an individual or organisation for outstanding merit in our field of activities. Next edition will be open for applications on January 2017.
The FEDARENE believes that the regional and local levels of governance play a central role in energy and climate issues, through their responsibility for many policy areas (energy, transport, housing…), their proximity to citizens, their thorough knowledge of the territory, and their greater flexibility than national governments. Regional and local players’ contributions are notably helping reduce Europe’s dependence on foreign energy, ensure Europe’s security of energy supply and prevent further impact on our climate.
The Award is named after Roger Léron, who was president of FEDARENE from 1995 to 2007 and a life-long contributor to the regional and local sustainable energy field.