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Special - Spatial Planning and Energy for Communities in All Landscapes Town and Country Planning Association European Union

Press Releases

May 2015

Lessons from Europe: Planning for renewable energy solutions

Representatives from the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) will today take part in a conference to advise planners, architects and politicians from across Europe on how spatial planning can be used to bring forward renewable energy solutions.  The TCPA conference which is part of the SPECIAL project will be held in Thessaloniki, Greece, and will be led by the Swedish partner FFS based on the leading-edge 4 Big Leaps and 20 Small Steps guidelines.

Diane Smith, Head of European Affairs at the TCPA said:
“The strong link between spatial planning and energy at the local level is already recognised and well established in many European countries.  With the SPECIAL project now in full swing, we have been able to take advantage of the opportunities to share experiences and gain knowledge from our European counterparts, and have now been able to develop effective training that can really bring about positive changes. We must seek to use this training, and shared knowledge to continue to build the capacity of our planners and local authorities to deliver the important local renewable energy projects that our town and cities desperately need.”  

The Intelligent Energy Europe funded project SPECIAL (Spatial Planning and Energy for Communities in All Landscapes), led by the TCPA, was launched in 2013. SPECIAL is a partnership between eight Town Planning Associations (TPAs) across Europe in the UK, Sweden, Ireland, Hungary, Italy, Greece, Germany and Austria, and aims to help the TPAs of the partner countries meet the EU’s challenging energy and climate change targets for 2020.
As part of the SPECIAL project, the TCPA is additionally working with the European Council for Spatial Planners (ECTP-CEU) to develop a pan-European guide on the integration of spatial and energy planning.

Diane Smith added:
“Planners and planning are instrumental in meeting the challenge of bringing forward renewable energy solutions for our towns and cities.  It is vital that we seize the opportunity to share best practice and exchange experiences from across Europe as we strive to deliver a more sustainable future.”