Energy efficient pathway for the city transformation: enabling a positive future

MAKING-CITY, the new large-scale demonstration project funded by Horizon 2020 EU’s research and innovation programme, held its kick-off meeting on 13-14 December in Valladolid, Spain. Gathering 34 partners coming from 9 countries, this 60-month H2020 project with a budget of 20 million euros aims to address and demonstrate the urban energy system transformation towards low carbon cities following the Positive Energy District (PED) concept.

Coordinated by CARTIF Technology Centre, the project involves 2 “lighthouse cities”, Groningen and Oulu, for the demonstration of their objectives. Both cities have been chosen due to their current work and commitment to energy transition, working with these two cities will inspire our 6 “follower cities”: León (Spain), Bassano del Grappa (Italy), Kadiköy (Turkey), Poprad (Slovakia), Vidin (Bulgaria) and Lublin (Poland), to replicate the solutions proposed. The consortium is made up of key stakeholders within the value chain of smart cities: leading European research/academic institutions, large industries, SMEs, public bodies and exploitation experts.

MAKING-CITY enables a positive future for cities. Whatever their size is, cities are essential actors in fighting climate change. In 2016, the organisation’s “Deadline 2020” report indicated that cities alone can reduce 5% of the world’s global emissions, contributing to meet the COP 21 Paris Agreement, and together with other tiers of government and the private sector, they can potentially contribute to reduce 46%.

MAKING CITY will focus on achieving evidences about the actual potential of the PED approach. This approach will serve as the basis and will be used to implement an energy efficient pathway for the city transformation. In a context of the COP 24 and the 2015 Paris Agreement, MAKING CITY will provide a long-term vision (the “City Vision 2050”) making a considerable change in the cities’ energy systems and organisational structure. The project will develop advanced procedures and methodologies based on the SET plan definition of PED: “A Positive Energy District is a district with annual net zero energy import and net zero CO2 emissions, working towards an annual local surplus production of renewable energy”.

How does LGI contribute to MAKING-CITY?

In collaboration with Cap Digital – the French hub for digital and ecological transformation, LGI will be in charge of the project’s communication activities and the organisation of events (workshops and Innovation Camps). In addition to monitoring and the facilitation of digital tools and channels (public website, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts…), LGI will produce a series of videos to present the project itself, its objectives and expected impacts, plus the research activities conducted in the 2 “lighthouses cities”. By the end of the project, a policy toolkit will be designed by LGI which will compile the best practices and recommendations for European policymakers to implement PED technology in their cities.

Activities and results carried out in the MAKING CITY project will be beneficial to a lot of cities considering that nearly 9,000 cities from the six continents have already publicly pledged to participate in the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, an international coalition of cities and local governments sharing the same long-term vision of action to “combat climate change and move to a low emission, resilient society”.