Norrbotten Region Energy Agency (NENET)
Established in 1997, Regional Energy Agency of Norrbotten (NENET) is one of over 400 local and regional energy agencies in Europe. We are the regional energy agency for the northernmost County in Sweden, Norrbotten, and are responsible to the County Council and all the municipalities in the county.
Our objective is to promote the use of renewable energy and a more effective use of energy. We have been partners in the Interreg IVc project Climact Region and this has highlighted the importance of effective Multi-Level Governance as well as of local and regional key stakeholders’ keen interest in this issue.
Watch our video to find out how we've been delivering energy initiatives in partnership, through the Coopenergy project:
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Why we are involved in COOPENERGY
We believe that planning for sustainable energy production and energy efficiency are of utmost importance for the region. On the one hand there is an enormous potential in renewable energy sources, and on the other there is high demand, specifically for industry (mining, steel and paper production). There still remains a huge untapped potential for energy efficiency, land-use planning and renewable energy production.
We will contribute with knowledge of Multi-Level Governance based on both regional and international experience as well as through active regional work for reaching the project targets.
What we want to achieve from COOPENERGY
COOPENERGY will help to improve collaboration between the 14 local authorities in Norrbotten and the regional level while involving and mobilising regional energy stakeholders and citizens. This is a prerequisite for an effective implementation of the regional SEAP.
At NENET we play an important role in facilitating and organising the cooperation process between the regional and local authorities. Through networking activities NENET can mobilise energy stakeholders, citizens’ groups and energy companies.
Norrbotten County needs to mobilise more people, organisations and key stakeholders in the implementation of the regional SEAP and to overcome barriers for joint actions caused by long-distances, sparse population and a lack of time and money at the local level. We need to find synergies between environmental and climate protection, a sustainable energy supply and regional development in the short term and long term, and to work continuously in an open, engaging and well-organised process with all relevant stakeholders. Collaboration with European partners will contribute significantly to improve regional energy and climate strategies and to involve communities in joint efforts for sustainable development.
Project progress: improving our multi-level governance
We started our regional COOPENERGY work by doing an analysis if and how the local and regional needs are addressed in the energy- and climate strategy of Norrbotten County. This we did by interviewing both involved regional authorities and a number of municipalities. This analysis showed clearl strengths like a broad awareness of the importance of participation processes combined with formal structures to give stakeholders opportunities to express opinion and interests. But it also showed weaknesses and problems, like limited resources of small municipalities in terms of money, knowledge and time. One key working field for COOPENERGY will be how to improve the energy planning process by giving clear benefits for municipalities if delivering to the regional strategy. The report of the review analysis has been discussed with the regional authorities and serves as basis for COOPENERGY activities. To read the full review, sign in to the collaboration platform.
Key stakeholders with regard to energy and climate in the county have signed a Memorandum of Cooperation committing to collaborate in improving energy planning processes as part of the COOPENERGY project.
In beginning of February 2014, we organised our first Energy Info Days to promote the regional energy- and climate strategy and to encourage local actions. We also had the first of four Multi-Level-Government (MLG) Forums to involve youth representatives and groups, NGOs and other engaged citizens with the goal of reaching a common consensus for sustainable energy planning.
In 2014, the County Council of Norrbotten became the First Territorial Coordinator in Sweden for the Covenant of Mayor. The Regional Energy Agency of Norrbottten, Nenet is owned by the County Council together with the fourteen municipalities in the County. These owners decided at the ownership meeting in April 2014, to give Nenet an extended role as a Regional actor. The two dominant parts of the extension was to carry out the active part of the County Councils role as coordinator for the Covenant of Mayors and to carry out an analysis on development of regional platform for project- and business development in the clean tech sector.
In 2015, the County Administrative Board is in charge of revising Norrbotten's energy- and climate strategy (SEAP) and will do so in a comprehensive participative MLG process. The Covenant of Mayors initiative can be used as a tool to create involvement and commitment for action with the municipalities, and the new role for Nenet will be to engage municipalities in the Covenent of Mayors initiative. Beyond, Nenet will provide hands-on support for municipalities to prepare their SEAPs and do SEAP monitoring. Technical support will be given to municipalities to facilitate the implementation of actions foreseen in local SEAPs.
In February 2015, the second Energy Info Days were held in Jokkmokk in collaboration with Jokkmokk Winter Conference with the title "Communicating Energy and Climate Science: Delivering Benefits to Northern Communities!" In addition, also the second Multi-Level-Governance Forum were held in Jokkmokk to encourage regional and local actions and to involve business, youth representatives, NGOs and other engaged citizens with the goal of reaching a common consensus for sustainable energy planning.
For further information on our sustainable energy activities in Norrbotten, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Communicating Energy and Climate Science: Delivering Benefits to Northern Communities!