June 16, 2023

What: Workshop Creating a community energy incubator for Slovenia

Where: Ljubljana, Slovenia

When: 14th June 2023

On June 14th the Thriving Communities organized an event dedicated to the idea of creating a community energy incubator for Slovenia. The workshop was facilitated by Tim Taylor (Korimako) and hosted by Focus. Two LEST members, Chloe Fournely and Marjana Harej, joined the event.

The workshop started with the mapping of current actions, projects and actors in the community energy space in Slovenia and identifying the biggest synergies and gaps. The participants agreed that although Slovenia is small, this field is very fragmented, with many players and initiatives. Communities or cooperatives are often built and operated by the investor (e.g., Petrol, GEN-I) and that does not include the citizens who are part of the community (no bottom-up approach). Nevertheless, one of the good examples is the energy cooperative Green Hrastnik (Zeleni Hrastnik).

In the next part workshop leader presented the idea of the Energy Community Incubator and invited the participants to share their thoughts on it. The discussion was focused on the program proposal with an emphasis on results and resources. The incubator would be organized as a one-stop shop and a funding body for new projects. The main point of the discussion was that there is a need for one central point/body which would facilitate the process of establishing communities to avoid useless redundancy. A more important question that remains is, who would be responsible for that kind of service.

Although it would be beneficial to have that kind of workshop also on a “higher” level, with more stakeholders involved, we enjoyed all the fruitful discussions and networking which will certainly result in new cooperation in the future.