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About SHAREs

SHAREs is all about energy communities

SHAREs, an EU-funded initiative, supports so-called local heroes in setting up or expanding their energy community and enables them to motivate consumers to participate, including those who do not yet have an affinity to energy or are simply unfamiliar with the concept of energy communities.

This puts consumers in the driving seat of the green transition process. Participating in energy communities allows them to become renewable energy producers, improve energy efficiency, store heat and power, feed energy back into the grid and offer their demand flexibility to the market. Individual consumers thus become collective prosumers.

... are those potentially interested in founding an energy community or setting up collective actions.

The SHAREs consortium comprises partners from Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Germany, and Hungary. Supporting local heroes is particularly important for countries where energy communities are yet to be established. However, even in countries where energy communities already exist there is still great potential to expand and develop their framework conditions.

SHAREs’ scope

SHAREs’ objective is to support a great diversity of collective actions, contributing to increased energy efficiency, optimised energy management as well as a higher share of renewables. Thus, the term energy communities in SHAREs refers to all forms of collective actions by and for consumers. In countries that have already implemented European law regarding energy communities, as for example in Austria, the focus lies on Renewable Energy Communities (REC) and Citizen Energy Communities (CEC).

How SHAREs supports energy communities and collective actions

The key to engage all citizens is through well-equipped local heroes. For this reason, a Gateway will be the central digital platform in each partner country where local heroes can find all information they need to set up or expand their energy community.

SHAREs supports local heroes by creating these country-specific platforms (SHAREs Gateways), which offer:

  1. country-specific information package to equip local heroes with all necessary information to set up their energy community (e.g., legal framework, model contracts, or business models);
  2. building blocks of a tailored “pick-and-mix” communication campaign to enable them to promote their energy community or collective action effectively to their most relevant consumer groups.

Rather than starting from scratch, SHAREs makes the most of existing initiatives, project results, and national as well as European tools and compiles them into central national Gateways. In addition, SHAREs builds on existing platforms wherever possible and cooperates with similar initiatives that are being developed right now.

The six national SHAREs Gateways combine the knowledge and tools of existing initiatives with the input of established energy communities and policy makers. A blueprint of the Gateway in English facilitates the creation of national websites and can be adapted to the individual needs of each country. After being tested and improved in at least 20 energy communities in six European countries, the SHAREs Gateway will be available to all relevant stakeholders across Europe.

SHAREs supports existing (pioneers), aspiring (pilots) and future energy communities

... are municipalities/groups of people setting up/expanding an energy community in the frame of and with support of SHAREs.

We will directly support at least 20 emerging energy communities (pilot projects) in the six partner countries in setting up their energy community or collective action. Through their feedback, the materials developed in the project will be tested and improved. The pilots cover various forms of energy communities in a broader sense, including a cross-border energy community between Austria and Hungary.

... are people/organisations who have already implemented energy community projects.

Pioneer communities are existing energy communities or collectives and can provide important insights based on their experience with the establishment and operation. Through SHAREs, they become part of a pioneers’ circle and thus regularly get the opportunity to exchange among themselves as well as to share their bundled knowledge.

... enables the experience transfer from pioneers to aspiring energy communities.

Through a mentoring scheme, pioneers pass on their first-hand experiences to aspiring energy communities. In addition, pioneers are supported by the materials developed in the project. They act as multipliers by disseminating the SHAREs Gateway and communicating about SHAREs in their own network.

Potential further communities are key to make SHAREs a success and are approached through various multipliers in partner countries and on EU level. The partners’ strong national networks and European outreach ensures that the SHAREs Gateway is strategically placed to reach the next local heroes founding their energy community.