On March 11-12, 2020 an international forum was held in Tallinn focusing on the current state of community energy in the countries around the Baltic Sea and the region’s vision for developing community-based energy production. 

The participants included a wide audience from representatives of the Ministries of the Baltic Sea States and local governments, guests from various universities, energy agencies and renewable energy associations and companies. 

The forum focused on discussions and recommendations on how to make the national legal framework more suitable for community energy projects, meaning energy cooperatives in Estonia: what can national policymakers and local governments do to encourage and facilitate community energy projects by adjusting sector legislation or regulations in their country? 

On the first day, a more general overview of the development of the sector at the European Union and Baltic Sea region level was given by representatives of Estonian and Latvian ministries, and the head of RESCoop, a joint organisation for European energy cooperatives, spoke about the community energy situation in Europe from the citizens or communities prspective. Aalto University presented the most up-to-date analysis of the barriers and drivers of community-based energy in the Baltic Sea region and different countries. 

On the second day, workshops were held to discuss and elaborate policy recommendations developed at the national level and in the Baltic Sea Region during the Co2mmunity project. 

The signing of a joint declaration by the all representatives of the 8 participating countries made a significant and future-looking point to the Forum. 

Main points of the document: 

  1. The potential and importance of community energy in delivering the objectives of the European Green Deal were emphasized.
  2. The need to further define the role and expectations of community energy as a key opportunity for communities to participate in the energy economy and contribute to a cleaner future was emphasized.
  3. The objective of the European GreenDealand the need to create a legislative framework conducive to community energy and to remove obstacles in all Member States of the European Union were reaffirmed. 

The full text is available here: Co2mmunity Tallinn meeting_Joint declaration signed

The forum presentations:

The forum was organized by the Tartu Regional Energy Agency in cooperation with the University of Kiel in the framework of the Co2mmunity project funded by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Program, which brings together partners from all the Baltic Sea countries as a single network.