A communal activity with the main objective to produce, distribute and sell electricity and heat through its equipment to its members, in order to cover self-supply and also to reduce costs and create a better living environment.
- The organization´s creator – the community;
- the organization´s objective – cost optimization, security of supply ja energy security, enhancing the competitiveness of the region.
Potential benefits from founding an energy cooperative, on the example of other countries:
- For the community
* the reduction of energy consumption, independence from energy price fluctuations;
* long-term knowledge of the energy price and more effective cost planning;
* direct economic benefits: investments, earning dividends;
* an increase of building and housing quality through renovation;
* community involvement and collective activities.
- For the local government / business
* cheaper energy with better security of supply;
* increased employment;
* an increase of economic activity in the region;
* accruing investments to develop the region;
* an increase in the region’s attractiveness – population growth, the inclusion of tax revenue;
* an improvement of the living and housing quality;
* an increase in the environmental awareness of the population.
The Energy Cooperative program
The Energy Cooperative Program has been initiated under the leadership of the Estonian Development Fund in 2013. The Estonian Development Fund carries the energy cooperative initiative in order to:
- collect and disseminate knowledge about the opportunities to create an energy cooperative;
- share information through broad-based awareness-raising activities to show the different options and to motivate decision-making;
- map and analyze the different effects associated with the creation and development of energy cooperatives, in order to modernize national development strategies and the regulatory environment and to initiate follow-up activities;
- contribute to the formation of the first energy cooperatives by arranging cooperation and identifying financing possibilities;
- involve expert knowledge of other countries and international funding by implementing international cooperation projects.
The Energy Cooperative program is aimed at creating initiative and coordinating activities, as well as mediating and maintaining the initiative between the business and the public sector.
Purview: Informing about opportunities to create energy cooperatives
- preparing smarter initiators;
- collecting and analysing facts – research;
Purview: Promoting the creation of energy cooperatives:
- piloting and mentoring initiatives;
- finding the best models and developing the scale;
- providing online counseling;
- contribute to networking – cooperation.
The Estonian Development Fund is also engaged in the outreach activities for the realization of the Energy Cooperative Program’s goals. The outreach activities are aimed at creating more energy cooperative initiatives (the currently mapped initiatives are displayed on the map of energy cooperative initiatives). The outreach activities are aimed at motivating the contributing parties and achieving mutual cooperation. Target group based outreach work in the form of events has been associated and thought through for the outreach activities. The outreach work is also carried out through a variety of communication activities – the Energy Cooperative website, design contests, the use of the media.