Our high-level jury has selected nine finalists across three categories (Innovation, Local Energy Action and Woman in Energy) for their impact on Europe’s energy transition. The European Sustainable Energy Awards (EUSEW Awards) recognise outstanding individuals and projects for their innovation and efforts in energy efficiency and renewables.
Discover how they are pushing forward clean energy across Europe and paving the way for others to do the same, then cast your vote for your favourites.
⚡️ Alqueva Floating Solar Farm, Portugal
‘We need innovation at scale to deliver climate action and nature protection’
The floating solar park in Alqueva, Portugal, is bringing clean, reliable and affordable energy as part of a hybrid renewable project. By combining a variety of energy types (solar, water, battery) to one point of grid access, the project, funded by the European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (EMFAF) achieved greater efficiency, more stable costs, and minimal environmental impact. Combining recycled plastic and cork composites in the floaters at the park reduced the carbon footprint of manufacturing the floaters by 30%.
⚡️ Solutions to Tackle Energy Poverty (STEP), Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Portugal, Slovakia, Poland, United Kingdom
‘Energy poverty can best be tackled through consumer awareness and behavioural change, empowering citizens to improve their situation.’
STEP worked in nine countries across Europe with the highest levels of energy poverty in Europe to advise consumers about saving energy. Innovative outreach including hotlines, ‘energy desks’ and YouTube videos brought vulnerable consumers into contact with trained experts helping to lower energy consumption and reduce bills. The Horizon 2020 funded project resulted in 8 970 tonnes of CO2 savings, the equivalent of removing 2 000 gasoline-powered vehicles off the road.
⚡️ Transport: Advanced and Modular (TrAM), Norway
‘If the technology doesn’t exist, we have to innovate it, and this is the result.’
The TrAM project in Stavanger, Norway, has developed the world’s first fully-electric fast ferry. Fast ferries are vital to the transport infrastructure in many parts of the world, but result in high carbon emissions, and until now it has not been possible to replace them with less polluting alternatives. The ferry’s modular design will mean that this Horizon 2020 funded project’s success can be replicated across the world.
⚡️ Balearic Islands’ self-consumption collective, Spain
‘We are bringing green, local, and cheap energy to every municipality in the archipelago.’
A network of self-consumption renewable energy projects across the Balearic Islands, Spain, are bringing clean and affordable energy to over 1 500 households. They use public infrastructure such as parking lots and rooftops to install solar panels and then sell clean electricity to the local community below market rates. With the help of public talks, locals learn how they can have a role in the green transition.
⚡️ The Križevci Laboratory for Innovation in Climate (KLIK), Croatia
‘We want to be energy independent by 2030 and we cannot establish nor achieve anything without citizens.’
KLIK energy community in Croatia is helping citizens with the installation of photovoltaic (PV) systems. The initiative, funded by EIT Climate, has so far resulted in 277kW of residential solar PV, which represents a EUR 500 000 investment. As well as educating citizens at the municipality’s energy climate office, this energy community has strengthened the local economy, creating 15 new jobs to date.
⚡️ Together with the Neighbours, Netherlands
‘We want to reduce the amount of fossil fuels used in civil society, but we also want to improve people’s income and stimulate them to have a more comfortable house.’
Volunteers at the Together with the Neighbours initiative in South Holland are educating fellow citizens about energy efficiency and how to achieve significant savings. By pooling their expert knowledge, they organise neighbourhood workshops and publish advice to help the neighbourhood reduce energy consumption and increase thermal comfort in their homes. The bottom-up initiative, which started in Dordrecht, is now being replicated across other villages in South Holland.
⚡️ Agnieszka Spirydowicz, Poland
‘My goal is to set an example of the best energy community working across borders in Europe and have it replicated in other regions in the EU.’
Agnieszka is bringing solar, wind and hydrogen power to her coal-dominated region of Poland. As the only woman in the Counselling Board in the National Chamber of Energy Clusters, she combines her social and technical know-how to inspire change in a traditionally men-driven energy sector. Alongside creating one of the best-developed energy communities in Poland, she is raising the profile of women as leaders in the green energy transition.
⚡️ Anastasia-Maria Moschovi, Greece
‘I believe that we are equally responsible for the energy that we consume and the energy that we have to save.’
Anastasia-Maria is converting research into real-life solutions in the energy transition of her country. With a focus on recovering critical raw materials from end-of-life devices, Anastasia-Maria leads a team of 15 young researchers in various EU-funded projects. Through her actions, she believes that the citizens of Athens will be able to massively adopt innovative hydrogen-based technologies utilising recycled materials. Her input as an industry expert has already brought many workable solutions to the clean energy sector. She actively promotes an inclusive strategy in all her activities.
⚡️ Silke Wesselmann, Germany
‘I feel personally responsible to do something in my region about climate change.’
As the first woman to lead the Office for Climate Protection and Sustainability in Steinfurt, Germany, Silke is driving the 24 cities in the district towards climate neutrality by 2040. Her strategy for implementing the energy transition is building alliances and fostering engagement. Bringing citizens onboard and translating global targets to the local context have been the key to her success.
The winners of all three categories will be announced during the Awards Ceremony during the European Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) on Tuesday 20 June 2023. Cast your vote - then join us in Brussels to discover who will take home the prize!
- Publication date
- 11 May 2023
- European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency