Book launch and symposium ‘A Circular Society in 2050’

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January 2021 – On 8 January 2021, the Dutch political party ‘GroenLinks’ successfully launched the publication ‘A Circular Society in 2050’ (‘Circulair samenleven in 2050’) with an online symposium visited by some 80 participants. The book, edited by SPA Sustainability, links for the first time the concepts of circular economy and a broad welfare by asking the question ‘what is required for living happily and comfortably together in a society that is circular in the Netherlands, Europe and globally?’. Ordering the book and more information about the symposium are available here.

Citizen Communities and Demand-Side Management in Europe

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December 2020 – In recent years, citizen energy communities that jointly produce renewable energy and sell it to the grid are starting to become integrated into the electricity grids in many EU countries. Cooperating as a community on joint energy saving is an even more recent development. In the European Horizon2020 project LIGHTNESS, five pilots on joint energy saving through an advanced network interface are tested in practice. The cases involve Zero Energy Houses in the Netherlands, social housing in Poland, a city as independent energy cooperative in Spain, a housing block in Italy and a business park in France. For Duneworks B.V., SPA Sustainability coordinates the work programme on citizen engagement.

How to phase down fossils in an ordered way

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November 2020 – Phasing down production of fossils in a fast but ordered way is one of the key challenges in the energy transition. SPA Sustainability chaired a workshop hosted by Wageningen University on ‘The Economics and Politics of Phasing Down Fossils’. In the workshop, practitioners from various academic disciplines as well as key stakeholders were brought together to discuss the issue. The workshop was held on November 3, 2020.

New Strategic Cooperation with Duneworks

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November 2020 – As of November 1st, 2020, SPA Sustainability has started a new strategic cooperation with the Eindhoven-based consultancy Duneworks. The goals of DuneWorks fit very well with those of SPA Sustainability, as the company is specialised in the societal aspects of the transition towards an inclusive and sustainable climate. The cooperation will entail European as well as Dutch national and local projects. See for more information the website of Duneworks here.

Green versus Red

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November 2020 – The election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the new presidential team of the United States holds promises for a more sustainable global and American development. An improvement of the environmental policies compared to the Donald Trump era is certain, but the real impact remains to be seen. The announced policies and further shift towards sustainability that are required, might be difficult to realise in the current controversial political context.

Scenarios for a Circular Netherlands in 2050

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September 2020 – For the scientific council of the Dutch political party GroenLinks (WBGL), SPA Sustainability started editing a book with scenarios and articles giving an impression of how a circular society in 2050 could look like. The book discusses not only possible technological innovations upto 2050, but also the social innovations that would have to with them. Risks and benefits of the transition towards a circular society are discussed.

Course Design ‘Citizens’ Initiatives for Sustainability’

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November 2020 – As a response to ever increasing citizens’ engagement in sustainability issues, for instance through renewable energy or ecological farming initiatives, SPA Sustainability designs a new course for policy makers and citizens interested in theory and practice of this topic. Some of the featured questions are: What kinds of citizen initiatives exist? How can they flourish and expand? What is their contribution to global sustainability transitions? What are potentials and limitations of these initiatives? and what are success factors for policy makers and citizens engaged in, or cooperating with such initiatives?

Final ClairCity Reports now Available

September 2020 – The final reports of the ClairCity project are now available. The reports outline the innovative ClairCity method to design and implement together with citizens ambitious air quality and carbon policies in cities. The method offers a unique combination of modelling, citizen engagement and policy co-creation that was successfully tested in six European cities and regions.