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RGI and the Institute for European Energy and Climate Policy (IEECP) led the International Energy Agency (IEA) UsersTCP Task "Public Engagement for Energy Infrastructure" – aimed at:

  • identifying common challenges and drivers for effective public engagement on energy infrastructure
  • collecting evidence from international case studies about which public engagement approaches are effective or ineffective
  • developing a best practice guidance for public engagement around energy infrastructure

The task in a nutshell


Achieving international climate and energy goals will require a rapid and profound transformation of our energy system. Considering this process affects people all over the world, public engagement is therefore crucial to ensure that society’s views, needs and concerns are considered and that a truly just and inclusive energy transition is pursued.

To facilitate this, the Engage4Energy project focuses on creating guidance on how public engagement can be promoted within the context of building renewable energy and grid infrastructure.

Over the past years and decades, many participation and involvement processes and practices have been developed, but no comprehensive overview of factors for success/failure exists. The Task hopes to start filling this information gap by evaluating past and current participatory actions and drawing lessons for effective engagement including useful formats and degrees of involvement.

The researchers behind this task aim to provide transferable and actionable guidance for future engagement activities done by project developers and public authorities.

 


How was the project implemented?


Throughout the project, we have involved stakeholders, specifically in the form of interviews and workshop participation. Based on their inputs as well as a comprehensive literature analysis and the assessment of 98 cases, an interactive guide for meaningful engagement in energy infrastructure has been developed.

This will also lead to the provision of policy-relevant insights on effective engagement of the public in energy infrastructure developments – all with the overall aim of speeding up and improving public acceptance for the energy transition.

 


Our Interactive Tool


The Engage4Energy Guidelines for citizens, developers and policymakers on meaningful engagement in energy infrastructure projects has been launched based on RGI and IEECP's year-long research – Explore the guide below!

The interactive tool aims at providing guidance for the user, tailored to their specific context. The customised recommendations follow a general structure based on four key principles: early engagement, transparency, inclusiveness and developing trust. They also offer specific actions to implement meaningful engagement through three levels: information sharing, consultation and empowerment. Lastly, the user has access to an inspiring example that showcases how engagement can be led in a meaningful way.

As part of the feedback from our Expert Workshop on 5 December, we hope to continuously update the tool. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with Nathália Pimentel at nathalia@renewables-grid.eu, should you have any suggestions for improvement.

 


Publications and outcomes


13 March 2024

The Engage4Energy project presented a UsersTCP Academy webinar to launch an interactive tool to guide project promoters, policymakers, and civil society on meaningful engagement in energy infrastructure projects.


28 February 2024

Through the assessment of 98cases of public engagement inenergy infrastructure projects, our newest report “Impact assessment of case studies: Assessing the impacts of public engagement in energy infrastructure projects” finds that public engagement can positively impact the project development process and its outcomes.


23 January 2024

Country representatives and task leaders met in Berlin to discuss the development of the E4E Guidelines for Public Engagement in Energy Infrastructure Projects.

The workshop allowed country representatives from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Ireland and Sweden to test the current version of the interactive tool and provide direct feedback on its usability, design and content. The task leaders also presented the communication strategy for the dissemination of the guide. The guide has been officially launched in March.


5 December 2023

An Expert Workshop was held online to harvest feedback from practitioners, civil society and academia actors on how the project's Guidelines should look like.


28 November 2023

The Public Engagement for Energy Infrastructure Task has published its first report on drivers and barriers of public engagement in energy infrastructure – with accompanying factsheet ad slide pack.



Contact


Stephanie Bätjer
Director - Communication

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t: +49 30 2332 11017
stephanie@renewables-grid.eu

Dr. Andrzej Ceglarz
Director - Energy Systems

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t: +49 30 233211014
andrzej[at]renewables-grid.eu

Nathália Pimentel
Manager - Communication

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t: +49 30 2332 11035
nathalia[at]renewables-grid.eu

Ira Shefer
Manager - Energy Systems

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t: +49 30 2332 11000
ira[at]renewables-grid.eu

RGI gratefully acknowledges the EU LIFE funding support:

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Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the LIFE Programme. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.