TODAY@EUSEW - Day 1


EU Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) is the largest annual event dedicated to renewables and efficient energy use in Europe, bringing together energy stakeholders to drive forward the clean energy transition. EUSEW 2020 will feature over 30 interactive online sessions on the theme ‘Beyond the crisis: clean energy for green recovery and growth’, as well as networking activities and a varied programme of side events for participants.


Day1@EUSEW

EUSEW 2020 kicked off with nearly 4,000 participants in total joining us for a day of insightful discussions. With 700 participants, the Opening session proved the most popular, and the session on ‘Energy transition towards climate neutrality’ inspired the most interaction with 79 questions asked by participants to speakers.

The first ever fully digital EUSEW experience saw stimulating debate on Europe’s post crisis recovery and how we can ensure that the EU remains fully faithful to its climate-neutral vision for 2050. Opening the Policy Conference, Kadri Simson, European Commissioner for Energy, emphasised the need to "shift our perspective from seeing the damage that the COVID 19 has done on our lives and our economy and see the opportunity to make a huge leap forward in building a climate neutral society."

This was followed by the much anticipated EUSEW Awards Ceremony and a thought-provoking debate with the EUSEW Ambassadors, who stressed the dangers of slipping back into pre-crisis ‘business as usual’.




The Day 1 discussions followed the first ever European Youth Energy Day that was organised digitally on 22 June as part of EUSEW 2020. 130 young Europeans aged between 18 and 30 exchanged ideas and debated on how to transform Europe into the first climate-neutral continent under the theme ‘The young generation shaping the vision for a European green recovery’.

Participants were able to express their views in a lively debate which included high-level speakers Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President of the European Green Deal, and European Commissioner for Energy Kadri Simson. Topics discussed ranged from very local questions (such as making cities more cycle-friendly) to global points (carbon border tax; how to change the food system), and from individual concerns (reskilling; empowering and educating electricity consumers), to broader, collective issues (energy efficiency in the building sector; micro grids).

As well as the policy sessions, many events are taking place in the digital sidelines of EUSEW 2020, including the first of the EUSEWElectric series today which discussed climate neutrality and how electrification is driving innovation in a range of sectors including transport and digitalisation. Further ‘electric breaks’ are planned on Days 2 and 3.

And don’t miss this year’s innovative ‘virtual stands’ section which includes information and lists of speakers and contact persons for organisations including the Covenant of Mayors and EUSEW organisers, the Directorate-General for Energy and the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME).



Coming up: DAY2@EUSEW

DAY2@EUSEW is set to feature a closer look at energy poverty and solutions from across the EU. Connecting Europe’s myriad of islands – currently largely dependent on fossil fuels – to the energy transition with the latest in hydrogen and energy storage technologies is another hot topic of the day. Meanwhile, for more on an inclusive energy transition tune in to the session on empowering consumers by creating hyper inclusive energy communities.


Have your say at EUSEW 2020

  • Can European people really accept cost-rising for clean energy after COVID-19?
  • We know that the aim is to reach climate-neutrality by 2050, but we are also hearing of growing climate concerns from regions across the globe. Are we on track?
  • In a crisis, politicians tend to stay with what they know and trust – borrowing from big banks for big central projects. How do we unlock grid-edge innovation?

These are just a few of the thought-provoking questions asked by you, the EUSEW 2020 participants, today.

Want to make your voice heard too?

- Ask a question to over 150 speakers in more than 30 thematic sessions using Sli.do. An embedded Sli.do window is available on each session page under the session stream player.

- Tell us what you think of a session or side event, all about the great new contact you’ve made, or simply why you’re taking part in EUSEW this year on social media using #EUSEW2020.

Please note that by using this hashtag, you agree that we may reproduce the content of your message on the EUSEW website to promote EUSEW.


Talking Energy

  Being efficient is a goal everyone can understand. If we don’t make the goal, we will be stuck with the same inefficiency, the same waste.

Bertrand Piccard, Chairman of the Solar Impulse Foundation


  One of the lessons [of Covid-19] is that there is the political will to do something very drastic. To shut down entire societies and gradually reopen them… Why not use some of this political will to address the climate crisis which in the long term is even more drastic than the COVID crisis… When we want to act, we can act.

Morten Helveg Petersen, MEP, Renew Europe Group


  We have a carbon budget of 420 gigatonnes left to release in the atmosphere. That leaves us 8 years, which is even before 2030. Every year after that we will have to pay for the challenges you are not tackling.

Adélaïde Charlier, Student and climate activist, Youth for Climate


  Both [Covid-19 and climate change] are global challenges. Both put the planet at risk, both require government action at a scale hardly seen before and both are situations that put the poor and vulnerable at greater risk.

Miriam Dalli, MEP


  We are in a critical juncture, there is a lot of rhetoric at the moment about the importance of making sure that our EU recovery is green, that it’s future proof. Here with the offshore renewable strategy we have a way to do that.

Pierre Tardieu, Chief Policy Officer, WindEurope


  This year’s decline in emissions erases the last 10 years in growth, but this is not the result of the right energy policies. We must avoid an emissions rebound.

Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the IEA


Powering the green recovery

Building renovation is also a key issue in the clean energy transition, as the EU building sector is the largest single energy consumer in Europe responsible for approximately 40% of energy consumption and for 36% of CO2 emissions.

New buildings should be designed and constructed in an energy and resource-efficient way. And existing buildings renovated in order to increase their energy-efficiency, bringing savings for consumers and lowering energy poverty. Another benefit for local communities is a cut in air pollution, which has been shown to reduce or even prevent numerous health problems.

Today’s sessions included a rich discussion from speakers from the European Parliament and Commission, national and regional policymakers and stakeholders in the debate ‘Boosting the European Green Deal renovation wave’ (Missed the session? Rewatch it from tomorrow at eusew.eu). The session explored the successful ingredients for a Europe-wide renovation strategy, looking at existing examples of renovation programmes at national or regional level and the intersection with skills and jobs.


  We mustn’t focus solely on the rate of innovation, we must at the same time focus on the depth or ambition of renovation.

Adrian Joyce, EuroACE Secretary General – Campaign Director of the Renovate Europe Campaign


Other upcoming sessions on this topic include:


The European Green Deal will boost investment in the planned wave of building renovation to increase the share of Europe’s energy-efficient building stock. This will be taken up in the autumn with the release of an action plan setting out the next steps going forward.

Interested in finding out more? Renovation wave


#EUSEW2020


EUSEW Award Winners 2020

Three ground-breaking sustainable energy projects from Belgium, Italy and Croatia won prizes at this year’s EU Sustainable Energy Awards. The Awards honour outstanding individuals and projects for their innovation in the sustainable energy sector. 9 projects competed in 3 categories – Engagement, Innovation and Youth – as well as for the 2020 Citizens’ Award, which was decided by voters across Europe.

A new category this year recognised the contribution of Women in Energy with prizes given to 3 outstanding individuals. In addition, a prize was also awarded to an inspiring sustainable energy initiative in an Eastern Partnership country.


Today we focus on CLEAR 2.0, winners in the Engagement category. A pan-European project spanning from Spain to Slovenia helping people become producers and consumers of renewable energy. The project helps address the reasons behind citizens’ hesitation to switch to home-based renewables by informing them and supporting them through all the steps. With an open-access website publishing product reviews and helping with bulk purchasing renewables, this project is helping boost citizen confidence.

  Our project motivated nearly 30,000 households in 6 different EU countries to go for in their homes, triggering a total investment of €129 million.

Giorgia Caroli, Programme Manager, CLEAR 2.0.




Another winner engaging people was Green Light Moldova which took the Eastern Partnership Award. It was voted by the public as the most inspiring project helping communities in the Eastern Partnership countries save energy. Two Moldovan municipalities committed to reducing their energy consumption and CO2 emissions by 20% by 2020, this was achieved by installing energy efficient lighting systems in both towns. The second and third prize were given to Armenia and Georgia, respectively.

Read more: Eastern Partnership Award projects


We also recognise Women in Energy winner Ada Ámon. After helping found influential clean energy think tank EnergiaKlub and working at E3G, an independent climate change think tank, Ada Ámon is now changing the lives of communities in Budapest, Hungary, through her role as Climate Commissioner to the Mayor and head of the city’s newly established climate department. Her progressive programme of renovating urban buildings to lower their energy consumption will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but also bring energy savings and lower costs for residents, as well as cleaner air for the city.



  It is not rocket science. Making buildings more energy efficient means you pollute less and have cleaner air. This saves lives and prevents early deaths.

Ada Ámon, Climate Commissioner to the Mayor of Budapest & Head of Climate Department




Webinars were organised in June to give the 9 finalists the chance to present their projects

A webinar with the 3 Women in Energy winners also took place to hear more about their inspiring work


#ENERGYDAYS around Europe...

Taking place throughout Europe, #EnergyDays are digital events engaging and inspiring local communities to help drive forward the clean energy transition.



Today, in Nicosia, Cyprus an interactive virtual workshop organised by the INTERPLAN project called ‘Lifting barriers in regulations for seamless energy transition for the grid operators of 2030’ took place. Participants discussed what steps grid operators and regulatory authorities can take next in the energy transition.


Developing smart cities was the topic of the day at the ‘Workshop Smart City-Sustainable City: towards resilient territories in the PACA Region’ also organised on 23 June in Aix-en-Provence, France. This project aims to support green growth and sustainable development while boosting both resilience to crises and job creation in companies and start-ups.


While on 22 June, in Hennigsdorf, Germany, the Cleopa SRI conference 2020 allowed stakeholders in building technologies, digital services, smart homes and city planning to unite to learn the latest developments in the Smart Readiness Indicator from across Europe.