The Aegean Energy and Environment Agency (AEGEA) was established in 2008 following a call of the European Commission to establish energy agencies at regional level across Europe so as to facilitate the implementation of EU energy and climate policies at local level. The primary goal is to promote sustainable local development in the Greek islands.
In collaboration with the Network of Sustainable Greek islands – DAFNI, which counts 44 island local and regional authorities as members, AEGEA supports island local and regional authorities in the maturation and realization of projects related to the upgrading of infrastructure in areas such as energy, transport, water and waste management. Further, AEGEA encourages the participation of local authorities and citizens in energy investments through innovative investment schemes and/or cooperatives, raises awareness on the need for citizens to adopt responsible energy consumption patterns and establishes strategic partnerships to promote sustainable solutions for insular regions at European and international levels.
The sectors in which AEGEA has become active over the past 10 years include: energy, transport and mobility, spatial planning, waste and water management, environmental management, culture, sustainable tourism and social economy, innovation, entrepreneurship alongside the shaping of island policy at local national, EU and international levels.
PROJECTS & ACTIVITIES
Smart Islands Initiative: a bottom-up effort of European island authorities and communities. It builds on years of collaboration between European islands and seeks to convey the significant potential of islands to function as laboratories for technological, social, environmental, economic and political innovation. The Network of Sustainable Greek Islands – DAFNI, currently coordinates the Smart Islands Initiative with the support of AEGEA. Website: http://www.smartislandsinitiative.eu
WiseGRID: Wide scale demonstration of Integrated Solutions and business models for European smartGRID (2016 – 2019). The project promotes the roll-out of innovative smart grid technologies through pilot applications in 5 sites in 4 different EU countries, one of which is Kythnos Island in Greece. Funding: HORIZON 2020. Website: http://wisegrid.eu
STEPPING: Supporting the EPC public procurement in going beyond (2016 – 2018): The project foresees the promotion of Energy Performance Contracts for the increased energy efficiency of public buildings in the Mediterranean. Funding: INTERREG – MED 2014-2020 Website: https://stepping.interreg-med.eu
MOTIVATE: Promoting citizens’ active involvement in the development of Sustainable Travel Plans in Med Cities with Seasonal Demand (2016 – 2018): The projects foresees the uptake of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans in the Mediterranean area through participatory means, such as the use of social media and crowdsourcing apps. Funding: INTERREG – MED 2014-2020. Website: https://motivate.interreg-med.eu
IMPLEMENT: Improving local energy and climate policy through quality management and certification (2018-2021). IMPLEMENT introduces to 30 pilot municipalities in Belgium, Croatia, Poland and Greece, the European Energy Prize Management and Quality Management System (EEA). Funding: HORIZON 2020. Website: http://www.european-energy-award.org/home/
HAPPEN: Holistic approach and platform for the deep renovation of the med residential built environment (2018-2021). Funding: HORIZON 2020
SMILEGOV: Enhancing effective implementation of sustainable energy action plans in EU islands through reinforcement of smart multilevel governance. AEGEA supports DAFNI Network with the coordination of the project.
ISLE-PACT: Assistance to the Covenant of Mayors Office for the development of support services, capacity-building tools and events for signatories of the Pact of Islands to ensure proper alignment of commitments deriving from the Pact of Islands with the ones deriving from the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (2016-present) Funding: CoM Office. Website: http://www.covenantofmayors.eu/Covenant-technical-materials.html
FEDARENE: active member of FEDARENE and since 2016 holding the Vice-presidency portfolio on “Smart islands, Remote and Small Communities”. Website: http://www.fedarene.org/about-us
The Conference “Sustainable Energy Applications in Greek Islands” has investigated the new possibilities and requirements (political, economic, regulatory, technological) that need to be in place for the mobilization of investments in RES, interconnections, energy supply, local energy systems or pilot projects on islands. Read more: press-release-en
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AEA (Aegean region, Greece)