On 09 October 2020 the Energy Care project organizes “Social Innovation for Green Neighborhoods”, a webinar about social innovation and sustainable urban development.

The online meeting is part of the Innovation Days, the final event of Energy Care that aims to raise awareness about the themes and the outputs of the project, which is co-funded by Interreg V-A Italy-Slovenia programme 2014-2020 and aims to reduce production of CO2, energy consumption and the spread and impact of energy poverty in the program area.

During the Innovation Days project partners, invited experts and guests will participate in project output presentations, thematic masterclasses and co-design sessions for innovative ideas.

The event will be the closing act of the Energy Care project, that has directly involved the inhabitants of the pilot areas located between Italy and Slovenia (Trieste, San Donà di Piave and Koper) to improve the energy efficiency of public buildings and mobility, encouraging forms of sustainable transport.

The project is inspired by the Sustainable Development Goal 11 “to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” and based on a model of social innovation that aimed to meet the needs of the territory by defining products and services through 3 Local Action Plans (one for each area) with the active involvement of representatives of institutions, citizens and important actors of the territory.

During the project, citizens have not only benefited from the investments made in the areas they live in, but have also acted in first person to become testimonials of the changes needed.
30 Ambassadors in the 3 project areas have been engaged for experimenting for a period of 1 month concrete behaviour change to reduce the CO2 consumption in everyday life.
Community planning activities and participatory events have been also organized to co-implement with residents the actions forecasted by the project. Moreover, a “Neighborhood Energy Lab” has been opened to foster positive collaborative actions among social housing inhabitants and citizens in the city of Trieste.
These activities aimed to contribute to the achievement of the Programme Area and Europe objectives of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.

Energy Care promoted positive changes in cohesion, livability, social inclusion, governance capacity, energy management and mobility by municipalities and other public bodies through three main actions:

1. territorial planning actions with the participation of the population to define the characteristics of the investments and change lifestyle in terms of energy consumption and mobility;
2. energy efficiency measures in public buildings and incentives for soft mobility;
3. training, especially in the field, to increase the capacity of public authorities to manage energy and sustainable mobility.

The project has foreseen the realization of 3 interventions, with concrete and measurable impacts in terms of reduction of CO2 emissions, energy use and increase of sustainable multimodal mobility, achieved through a participatory approach aimed at active involvement and exchange of knowledge between the different stakeholders and inhabitants of the three territories:

- The ATER complex in via San Giovanni Bosco in the Ponziana district of Trieste has been the subject to energy efficiency measures and promotion of sustainable mobility. 32 photovoltaic systems have been installed to serve consumers of electricity, outdoor lighting and the thermal power plant; all outdoor lighting has then been replaced with new LED lamps that complement the energy saving actions. In addition, 10 electric bicycles, powered by photovoltaic panels, have been made available for the area.

- In Koper, an energy efficiency project has been implemented at the Semedela kindergarten and an action/campaign has been launched to promote sustainable mobility in the area of the “Oskar Kovačiči” lower primary and secondary school in Škofije through the construction of a bicycle parking lot in the school building.

- In San Donà di Piave, a cycling/pedestrian lane has been created in Viale Libertà with the contribution of the inhabitants who participated in the planning via the WeGovNow platform; 2 bicycle racks and 2 cameras have been positioned to monitor the cycling flow and, at the same time, prevent vandalism.

In the three project areas, 100 new trees have been planted.

In addition, it has been decided to build a cross-border model of participatory territorial planning and social innovation for reducing energy consumption and for sustainable and smart multimodal mobility. Collaboration between public and private bodies and citizens in the definition of products, services and models will be encouraged, translated into actions in the 3 LAPs (Local Action Plan), while ensuring the satisfaction of social needs and the creation of new relationships and collaborations.