Cork City Council is a partner alongside the International Energy Research Centre (IERC) at Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork for the EU Horizon 2020 project to manage a three-year Citizen Engagement and Energy Collective Action project with two million Euros funding. This project aims to accelerate the growth of energy communities throughout European regions by developing an inclusive standard framework. It also aims to facilitate citizen participation in the transition from a ‘consumer-market’ to a prosumer market.

As a project partner, Cork City Council will provide a pilot location and oversee the management of its ‘One Stop Shop’ model. One of the key features of the project is the training of Implementation Champions on key topics such as behaviour change, prosumerism, collective actions and their benefit to consumers, and what it means to become an energy citizen in a sustainable energy community. These Champions will act as local energy experts closely working with local authorities and providing advice to local citizens and communities.

The project will run under the EU partnership banner of UP-STAIRS, which stands for Uplifting Communities: Structuring collective action for sustainable local transition and identifying regulatory solutions for adopting frontier technologies and disruptive business models.

Initial pilot locations are Cork City, Ireland; Barcelona Metropolitan Area, Catalonia, Spain; Brunnthal, Bavaria, Germany; Upper Austria Region, Austria; and the Municipality of Asenovgrad, Bulgaria. The project was launched on 30th September, 2020.

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