Based on Liechtenstein’s geographical proximity to and close, successful cooperation with Switzerland, the country has been fully integrated into the Swiss European Energy Award (eea) programme "Energiestadt". The foundation for this successful cooperation was laid in 2002/2003.
The Energiestadt / eea programme forms an important part of Liechtenstein’s national 2020 energy strategy and therefore enjoys government support via the Office of Economic Affairs. The increasing demands associated with the eea label are met with the assistance of local eea advisors and highly committed local working groups/committees, and through regular exchanges of experiences.
Triesen was Liechtenstein’s first municipality to be certified eea in 2004, and the way forward shown by Triesen triggered a veritable “eea boom” in the country. Triesen was followed by the municipalities of Planken (2006), Schaan (2007), Mauren (2008), Balzers (2009), Vaduz (2009) and Ruggell (2010), and in 2012 Eschen, Gamprin, Schellenberg and Triesenberg were the final three municipalities to be awarded the eaa label.
Planken, the smallest eea municipality of the Energiestadt programme with only 430 inhabitants and an area of 5.3 km2, was successfully recertified in 2014, having achieved 74.8 % of its target. This municipality has clearly demonstrated that small size is no impediment to great achievement with model function. The 11 municipalities making up the principality of Liechtenstein in the heart of Europe have achieved outstanding success in energy, environmental and mobility management. This makes the country, one of the world’s smallest with about 37,000 inhabitants and an area of 160 km2, the first that can genuinely be called an eea country.