Social Green’s regional partners from regional energy agencies, managing authorities and municipalities in Spain, Romania, and Croatia are in the process of improving regional policy instruments around energy efficiency in social housing. Nordregio acts as lead and advisory partner and provides scientific and technical support to the regional partners in the consortium. Initially beginning in 2016, the Interreg Europe Social Green project is currently in a one-year, fifth call project to evaluate the COVID-19 influences on energy poverty and to draw lessons learned aiming to improve selected policy instruments that target energy poverty.  

In Romania, Alba Iulia Municipality (AIM) seeks to revise the Regional Operational Programme 2021-2027 to include objectives for increasing energy efficiency in social housing. Meanwhile in Southern Romania, the Sud Muntenia Regional Development Agency (SMRDA) is currently acting as the managing authority for the Regional Operational Programme by which the agency hopes to evaluate the social impacts of COVID-19 and implement good practices learned via interregional learning processes to reduce energy poverty. Croatia’s Regional Energy Agency North (REAN) is a member of the national working group for drafting the National Programme for Energy Renovation for Buildings 2021-2030. In this position, the agency seeks to propose rooftop solar PV to be included in the policy instrument as an energy renovation tool for efficiency and cost savings. Finally, the Extremadura Energy Agency (AGENEX) in Spain continues to work with the Regional Operational Programme to determine investments in new social housing with high energy efficiency standards and allocate funding for retrofitting existing social housing.

In the coming months, the regional partners will identify good practices with their local stakeholder groups, which can then be shared and discussed in the first interregional meeting in December. Partners will also begin assessing the strength, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats present in their regional contexts around renovating social housing for energy efficiency.