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Covenant of Mayors - Europe
News article16 August 2023

Joining forces with other cities for more impactful climate and energy action

Discover collaborative tools and strategies to boost action in climate and energy: from developing joint Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans to project bundling.

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In sustainable energy and climate action planning, city practitioners face numerous challenges when developing bankable projects to combat climate change. Attracting the investment and finding the funds for local projects is one of the biggest obstacles for cities to implement their action plans.    

Recognising the need for collaborative efforts, the concept of Joint Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plans (SECAPs) has emerged as a powerful tool for achieving greater impact. Alongside this, Project Bundling has become a strategic approach within Joint SECAPs, offering significant advantages to local authorities when developing actions and projects to combat climate change. 

Joint SECAP: Fostering Collaborative Action   

A Joint SECAP refers to a plan developed collectively by neighbouring local authorities. This approach entails building a shared vision, conducting an emission inventory, assessing climate change impacts, and defining a set of actions to be implemented individually and collectively within the concerned territory.

By collaborating, local authorities can achieve more effective results compared to isolated efforts. The collective nature of Joint SECAPs also enhances the potential to attract investments due to the larger scale and lower risk associated with joint initiatives. 

See our quick guide to Joint SECAPs here

Project Bundling: Collaboration and Financing   

Within the framework of Joint SECAPs, Project Bundling plays a pivotal role in harnessing the benefits of collaboration. Project Bundling involves combining multiple relatively small-scale energy efficiency or adaptation projects to form a joint thematic portfolio that surpasses a specified investment threshold. This structure enables bulk procurements, making it more appealing and sustainable for financing institutions, regional investment banks, and other financiers.   

Advantages of Project Bundling 

  • Access to Expertise: Project Bundling facilitates access to high-level technical, administrative, and management expertise. The shared resources and collective efforts of municipalities provide an opportunity to leverage specialized knowledge, ensuring the successful implementation of projects. 
  • Accelerated Process: By bundling projects, the design, implementation, upscaling, and replication processes are expedited. This streamlined approach saves time and resources, enabling cities to make significant progress in their sustainable energy and climate goals within shorter timeframes. 
  • Increased Attractiveness for Financiers: Bundled projects have a higher appeal to potential financiers due to their aggregated value. This increased attractiveness enhances the chances of securing financial support and accelerates the realization of sustainable initiatives. 
  • Enhanced Impact: Project Bundling has the potential to create more significant impacts in achieving energy and climate-friendly communities. By consolidating projects, a synergistic effect is generated, leading to more substantial emission reductions and climate resilience. 
  • Transversal Technical and Administrative Office: Collaboration through Project Bundling enables the creation of a transversal technical and administrative office. This centralized entity brings together municipalities, fostering knowledge sharing, best practices, and coordination of resources. 
  • Geographic Scope Expansion: Project Bundling facilitates the delineation of a geographic scope that encourages more municipalities to team up and participate in a common investment program. This expansion broadens the impact and allows for comprehensive regional development. 

Discover our full guide to project bundling here


Publication date
16 August 2023