The German Marshall Fund and Energy Cities Launch Transatlantic Project Addressing Role of Cities in Driving the Energy Transition
Government and Civil Society Leaders from Cambridge, MA; Charlotte, NC; Heidelberg, Germany; and Nantes, France Selected to Participate
Project to Include Public Event in Cambridge Tomorrow
Washington, DC — After the Trump administration removed the United States from the landmark Paris climate agreement, cities have increasingly taken a central role in the global effort to limit the effects of global warming. Many municipal governments have already set targets of reaching 100 percent renewable energy, but they cannot act alone. For cities to succeed in the transition to a sustainable, low carbon future, recognizing the key role of a whole new set of actors — such as civil society — will be a critical factor.
This week, The German Marshall Fund’s Urban and Regional Policy Program (URP), in partnership with Energy Cities, launches “Energy Allies,” a transatlantic project that will harness the role of civil society in cities as drivers of sustainable solutions to climate change.
The eighteen-month project will bring together a delegation of local civil society and government leaders from two U.S. cities (Cambridge, MA and Charlotte, NC) and two European cities (Nantes, France and Heidelberg, Germany), together with relevant stakeholders from umbrella organizations in the U.S. and the EU to collaborate on innovative approaches to energy transition in cities. “Energy Allies” kicks off in Cambridge with an intensive series of peer-to-peer learning workshops designed to foster collaboration on the policy planning and implementation of energy transition policies. Energy Allies is funded by the European Union under the program “EU–U.S.: Transatlantic Civil Society Dialogues.” A follow-up workshop will reengage the same delegations in Nantes this spring.
“Despite their differences, Cambridge, Charlotte, Heidelberg, and Nantes all have something in common: a commitment to explore innovative ideas and policy solutions needed to realize the energy transition,” said URP Director Geraldine Gardner. “We hope that by bringing these delegations together they can amplify their efforts to engage civil society and strengthen partnerships, ultimately becoming models for other transatlantic cities.”
“I see great city-citizen cooperation around Europe,” added Miriam Eisermann, head of communications and policy for Energy Cities. “We can do even better side by side with our U.S. friends. Energy Allies is just the perfect learning opportunity.”
In conjunction with Energy Allies, GMF will also host a public event in Cambridge on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 from 5-6:30 p.m. EDT. Speakers from Nantes, Heidelberg, and Cambridge will discuss how their respective cities are working toward collaborative energy transition solutions. Speakers include: Jan Devereux, Vice Mayor, City of Cambridge; Susanne Rasmussen, Director of Environmental and Transportation Planning, City of Cambridge; Laurent Comeliau, Director of Energy Transition Roadmap Development, Nantes Metropolis; and Sabine Lachenicht, Head of the Environmental Office, City of Heidelberg. More information about the event follows.
Media wishing to request interviews with Energy Allies participants, or to RSVP to attend the public event, should respond directly to this email or be in touch with the media relations contact listed above.
TOWARD ENERGY TRANSITION INNOVATIONS: EXPERIENCES FROM EUROPEAN CITIES
PUBLIC EVENT INFORMATION – RSVP Required
WHAT: Toward Energy Transition Innovations: Experiences from European Cities
WHEN: Tuesday, October 30 // 5-6:30 p.m. EDT
WHERE: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Wong Auditorium
MEDIA RSVP: Respond directly to this email
- Jan Devereux, Vice Mayor, City of Cambridge, Massachusetts Mayor's Office
- Geraldine Gardner, Director of Urban and Regional Policy, The German Marshall Fund of the United States
Introduction of Energy Allies
- Miriam Eisermann, Head of Communications and Policy, Energy Cities
Panel Discussion Followed by Q&A
- Laurent Comeliau, Director of Energy Transition Roadmap Development, Nantes Metropolis
- Sabine Lachenicht, Head of the Environmental Office, City of Heidelberg
- Susanne Rasmussen, Director of Environmental and Transportation Planning, City of Cambridge | Moderator
About the German Marshall Fund:
The German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) strengthens transatlantic cooperation on regional, national, and global challenges and opportunities in the spirit of the Marshall Plan.
GMF contributes research and analysis and convenes leaders on transatlantic issues relevant to policymakers. GMF offers rising leaders opportunities to develop their skills and networks through transatlantic exchange, and supports civil society in the Balkans and Black Sea regions by fostering democratic initiatives, rule of law, and regional cooperation.
Founded in 1972 as a non-partisan, nonprofit organization through a gift from Germany as a permanent memorial to Marshall Plan assistance, GMF maintains a strong presence on both sides of the Atlantic. In addition to its headquarters in Washington, DC, GMF has offices in Berlin, Paris, Brussels, Belgrade, Ankara, Bucharest, and Warsaw. GMF also has smaller representations in Bratislava, Turin, and Stockholm.