To implement their action plans, cities and towns who have signed the Covenant of Mayors across Europe are not working alone. They are supported and assisted by a network of territorial coordinators from the different countries where the Covenant of Mayors – Europe operates. Provinces, regions, ministries and national energy agencies… Covenant Coordinators are public authorities who provide strategic guidance, technical and financial support to Covenant municipalities.
What do Covenant Coordinators do?
Alongside financial assistance, Covenant Coordinators typically support signatories in conducting a CO2 emission inventory or a climate risk assessment, as well as in preparing and implementing their Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans. Working with coordinators from regional and national levels to support municipalities on their territories is key to expanding the Covenant’s reach and ensuring effective implementation of its actions across the continent.
To get better insights into what exactly they are doing and to advance their work even further, the Covenant of Mayors Office annually conducts a survey to gather experiences from coordinators. This survey gives us an overview of the areas where coordinators are most active, as well as the barriers they face for effective implementation.
Main areas of action in 2023
While we observe that the coordinators’ work is mostly focused on accelerating the retrofitting of buildings, renewables deployment, the energy crisis also boosted the coordinators’ actions on other fronts, such as: reaching agreements with RES energy producers to allow lower energy prices, accelerating the installation of district heating and cooling, installing smart public lighting, and supporting the decarbonisation of industry.
Nonetheless, territorial coordinators face multiple challenges in implementing these measures. This year’s survey shows us that, mainly, they lack financial resources, struggle to involve relevant stakeholders and have a difficult time recruiting and employing technical staff. Understanding these barriers gives us a greater understanding of key obstacles hindering the energy transition at local level, pushing us to search for solutions at EU and national level that could help facilitate the process.
Facilitating Multilevel Governance
Another important aspect of the coordinators’ work lies in their role as facilitators of effective multilevel governance practices in their territories. Multilevel governance in climate action refers to the co-creation of solutions across different levels of government (local, regional, national and EU) to tackle climate change. Cities and towns, as frontrunners of climate action, have an important role to play in implementing the EU Green Deal. The Covenant of Mayors relies on territorial coordinators to make sure municipalities are active participants and important collaborators of regional and national governments to help reach the EU’s targets.
Are you a Covenant Coordinator or do you act in a similar role? Find inspiration in the actions of the Flemish Brabant region of Belgium, the Basque Environmental Energy Agency in Spain, the Czech Ministry of Environment, and many more… Discover the innovative measures and successful initiatives implemented by public authorities to combat the energy crisis and support multilevel governance.
By learning from the experiences of others, you can find inspiration to implement similar measures in your territory, driving progress toward a sustainable future!
About the Survey
The survey addresses several critical topics related to the energy transition and multi-level governance in Europe, including:
- Identifying concrete barriers hindering the energy transition, and the resulting increased challenges in addressing the energy emergency faced by regions, provinces, and counties across Europe.
- Understanding the priorities of European regions concerning mitigation, adaptation, and energy poverty, along with the actions they are implementing to enhance the resilience of their territories.
- Assessing the availability of methodologies or approaches for the development of Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans (SECAPs), and exploring the potential support that the Covenant could provide to enhance them.
- Examining multilevel governance practices in Europe and the potential support that the Covenant could provide to strengthen these practices.
- Publication date
- 9 August 2023