... more than 25 years of experience
... 1,700 municipalities participating
... total population of 65 million involved
... largest local authority participating: Lyon Metropolis (FR, 1.34 m inhabitants)
... smallest local authority partcipating: Senèdes (CH, 156 inhabitants)
The European Energy Award is a quality management and awarding system for municipalities and regions. It supports local authorities in establishing interdisciplinary planning approaches and implementing effective energy and climate policy measures. The success of the eea is based on 4 pillars:
The eea translates national goals effectively into local policy recommendations. These provide guidance for local authorities in allocating their resources to achieve optimum efficiency in their measures.
The eea has been continually developed by municipalities and experts on the local level since 1988. Careful consideration of the regional context forms an integral part of the program.
eea local authorities implement customised action plan with a long-term view. Action plans are evaluated and adjusted every 4 years with the assistance of accredited experts.
Local authorities‘ efforts are assessed with regard to their individual scope of action. This allows a comparison of different municipalities and the establishment of an international benchmark.
The number of awarded local authorities has been constantly increasing over the past ten years. As per the beginning of 2020, 982 of a total of 1,596 participating municipalities had been awarded the European Energy Award, 132 of which the European Energy Award Gold. The participating municipalities and districts especially appreciate the following benefits:
The eea comprises an iterative management process that guides local authorities in continuously improving their energy and climate policies. The well structured process allows for energy targets to be met faster.
Each local authority is assisted by an external energy consultant, which provides technical and organisational support throughout the entire eea process. An accredited eea auditor reviews the local authorities' activities and rating to ensure the harmonised application of the certification system.
All national eea organisations have developed country-specific tools and checklists to facilitate the implementation of specific measures by local authorities. These national tools form an essential part of the eea process.
Labelling under the European Energy Award provides an incentive for local authorities to strengthen their activities and makes a strong point for location marketing purposes. The European Energy Award Gold further honours local authorities with exemplary energy policies for taking a pioneering role.
Best practice examples are regularly shared in national and in international exchange of experiences. Common identified weaknesses are addressed by the national eea organisations in specific trainings for local authorities.
The European Energy Award takes particularities of individual countries and regions into account, yet provides for benchmarks to be established between local authorities at a European level.
The eea process can be carried out as an independent programme, but it is recommended that municipalities and regions make it part of a broader energy and climate protection programme. It can also be used as a tool for implementing the Covenant of Mayors, and it allows the integration of Smart City projects. The Association European Energy Award is additionally working towards harmonising the eea with ISO standards.
See also the H2020 EU project CoME EASY.