• IRES 2017
    14-16 March 2017
    11th International
    Renewable Energy
    Storage Conference

    and
    6th Energy Storage
    Europe

  • ESP 2017
    European
    Solar Prize
    Award 2017
    Application
    period open
    till 31 May 2017

Eurosolar englisch transparent

Independent. Critical. Non-profit.

EUROSOLAR works for the rapid and complete removal of nuclear and fossil energies through renewable energies. Support our voice for a dynamic and decentralized energy supply with your membership.

On 19 September 2016 Josep Puig, Vice-President of EUROSOLAR and President of EUROSOLAR Spain, held a vivid speech at the Comission of Environment and Sustainability of the catalan Parliament in order to contribute to law negotiations regarding climate change.The speech is now available in written form and can be read below.

Honorable Parliamentarians,

I want to express my gratitude for inviting me, on behalf of EUROSOLAR - the European association for renewable energies, in the committee dealing with the bill on climate change.

I congratulate the legislative initiative being carried out, but at the same time I wish to express to you that this law comes very late. And not only that, but its content does not directly address the problem we have in modern societies. This problem can be summarized in a single word of four letters: FIRE!

In the climate debate, which began with the 1st Climate Conference in 1979, nobody is mentioning the fire. Since then, every one is speaking with words and phrases such as "fossil fuels", "carbon", “carbon dioxide", "higher temperatures", "floods and droughts", "increase sea level", "disappearance of glaciers", "melting of polar ice", etc.

All these phenomena, that today we already are noticing, are signs that something is wrong in our world, in our society.

Being a symptom, it not means to be the cause of the problem. The symptoms are the result of human activity around the fire. Said loud and clear: fire is the cause of climate change.

Fire is an ancestral form of energy production that humanity learned from nature to meet their basic needs. Neanderthals were our predecessors who learned to master the fire. We, Homo sapiens, have evolved with fire.

But with the rise of industrialism, human societies demystified the fire, converting it to combustible materials, mainly wood, which was a common good, but since then transformed into a commodity. The depletion of biomass forced extraction of combustible materials from underground. The burning of these materials through various technological gadgets, can provide the societies with the services that the released energy makes possible: light, heat, strength, mobility, and even allows us to have a special way of energy, electricity.

Today, the 21st century’s society obtains most of the energy burning fossil fuels and fission nuclear materials extracted from the subsoil. By burning and fission, in a very inefficient way, the society get the energy it needs, much of which is wasted without any use. The result is in front of us: the global temperatures are increasing. . .  we break records day after day.

What we now call "progress" was associated with fire. We instilled that for progressing it was necessary to increase our ability to make fire. The clearest example of this is the nuclear "fire". It is used in nuclear fission reactions in the reactor core (with temperatures of hundreds of degrees and very high pressures, producing wastes and emissions that poison the biosphere with radioactivity) to boil water!, when to boil water it only needs temperatures of 100 degrees, which we can easily get from the sun.

Our ancestral link with the fire it makes, even today, to consider fire as a friendly and welcoming phenomenon. But fire is an extremely violent phenomenon, since it produces heat at temperatures high enough to endanger all living beings. The fire converts materials into wastes, often hazardous.

Because humanity has always used fire, human societies have never assessed quantitatively, accurately, its harmful consequences. They are considered as inevitable, thinking that there are no alternatives to energy production without using fire.

Today we begin to realize that progress based on fire can lead us to an ecological and social regression, because the consequences of the industrialist addiction to burning fossil fuels can lead to the destabilization of the climate balance of the planet, balance that allowed the emergence of living beings, including humans.

Anyone who wants to take a legislative action to deal with climate destabilization should address the use of fire for energy production. This means a radical change in the way we get energy and how we use it.

This energy change, what I mean, only could be made reality with a techno-energy revolution. This means a technological revolution that will lead to the use of the energy contained in the biospheric and lithospheric flows. Getting energy without using fire. Energy free from fire.

The European association I represent, does not expect much from the so-called global climate 'negotiations'. Almost 25 years have been spent since the United Nation agreed to the Framework Convention on Climate Change, and emissions of greenhouse gases have continued to grow. And temperatures do too.

The model to follow is clearly visible in the examples of successful technological revolutions that have occurred in modern economic history: none of them has emerged from any international agreement! Look microcomputers, mobile telephones, etc. . .

The successful political or business slogans of all these technological revolutions were "to be faster than the other to achieve a competitive advantage for its own domestic economy or the company itself."

In Catalonia, specifically in the city of Barcelona, in 1981 it was created and engineers’ coop to develop wind technology, which became one of the 10 companies most technologically advanced in the world in this field. This was recognized by the European Wind Enegy Association - EWEA giving the Paul LaCour Award 2001 to its founders ("awarding the developer's outstanding achievements in the field of wind energy").

Of course, at that time the president of Catalonia stated (it was published as news to in the “El Noticiero Universal”): "to say that the problem of energy can be solved with solar and wind energy have no sense .... the basements of the energy are the thermal and nuclear power plants". And he was not ashamed of saying this, while traveling in California, when that country was experiencing the first wind eclossion under the leadership of the young, at that time, governor Jerry Brown. Today Edward G. Brown is again governor and he has undertaken an ambitious program to reduce GHG emissions (40% reduction by 2030 compared to 1990, increasing to 50% the contribution of renewables in the electricity mix, reducing by 50% the automotive industry based on oil and doubling energy efficiency in existing buildings). And not only that, but California, in partnership with the German state of Baden-Württemberg, initiated the call Under2MOU, which now covers 135 signatories from 32 countries on six continents. The Catalonia’s Minister of Planning and Sustainability signed this agreement on May 19th., 2015.

The governments of Catalonia and their parliaments have never laid the groundwork necessary to launch the necessary techno-energy revolution already underway in several countries, although we had the opportunity to be in this league. The politics did not make it possible to continue.

In contrast, conventional energy economy emerged thanks to political protectionism, and there are those who, wanting to perpetuate this situation, want to prolong his life when conventional energy economy is destined to disappear as we have known to date.

In this way one can understand the subjugation of politics to the interests of oligopolistic energy companies, heirs of former regional monopolies.

In this way you can understand the administrative barriers that this Parliament has erected for the technologies to capture, transform and use of the energy contained in the biospheric and lithospheric flows. Barriers that have made our country not included among the countries leaders in this techno-energy revolution. Do you think that for erecting one single wind turbine, the procedure that it has been applied was a Decree strictly focused on wind farms (more that one single wind turbine)? and that the procedure is extended over 4 years?

To open the door to this techno-energy revolution it is necessary to remove all administrative obstacles prevailing, as the result of bad political decisions of the past.

And the law of climate change, now being discussed in this Parliament, is very short in this regard. The law should include a roadmap for energy transition towards a 100% renewable energy supply, so that local wealth (energy from sun, wind, water, organic matter, the heat from the earth, etc.) can benefit local communities, preventing that there is no chance of grabbing these wealth by oligopolistic companies, which while enriching them, they are impoverishing most of the population.

The rapid change towards 100% renewable energy supply will only grow from the multiplication of actors with different motivations but which are not subject to the logic of the system of conventional energy regime. The policy priority must be to open the necessary action spaces and their enlargement without stop. So there are two essential systemic guidelines:

1. to translate the benefits to society and the national economy, inherent to renewable energies, in individual economic incentives (such as the 'Feed-in-tariff - FIT' laws have proven). At the same time, a system of taxation on emissions may be the approach that covers the entire energy system.

2. to impose by law, the general preference for renewable energy both in what refers to the planning and construction of energy systems, so that being eliminated all existing bureaucratic obstacles.

Everything else will come, almost by itself, from society with its economic forces, especially at the municipal level through technology and industrial development.

To do this, we do not need a "global political energy concept", such as Energy Plans agreed with energy oligopolies with intermediate solutions for nuclear and coal power plants. What is needed are political decisions that allow the freedom of action of the thousands of stakeholders that enable the necessary investments to promote the energy change.

It is at the political level where decisions are made the min mission to accelerate the energy change that is being implemented by society.

As Hermann Scheer, our founder and undisputed political leader of the techno-energy revolution, wrote in his latest work "The Energethic Imperative means total acceleration."

Today we can free ourselves from the dependence on fire and we can have an energy system fire free because we have technologies that allow us to glimpse towards a 100% renewable energy system and serving people. A country like Denmark, similar in size as Catalonia, is already on that way, since long time ago.

You have the key to open this door. And the key is to make POLITICS in capital letters. Politics that allows citizens and communities to make a social appropriation of technologies that make possible for our society to have energy without having to get it from fire.

We hope that this Parliament will be at the height of the times in which we live.

Pep Puig i Boix
PhD engineer
Vice-president of EUROSOLAR - The European Association for Renewable Energy
President of the Spanish section

Events

14-16 March 2017

11th IRES Conference

11th International Renewable Energy Storage Conference (IRES) and 6th Energy Storage Europe (ESE) in Düsseldorf, Germany

10-11 May 2017

Municipal Utilities Conference

The annual Municipal Utilities Conference with Renewable Energies (Stadtwerke-Konferenz)

18-20 May 2017

IRENEC 2017

The annual International 100% Renewable Energy Conference (IRENEC 2017)

30 September 2017

Austrian Solar Prize

Award Ceremony of Austrian Solar Prize

14 October 2017

German Solar Prize

Award Ceremony of German Solar Prize

Twitter

World Council for Renewable Energy (WCRE)

WCRE

World Council for Renewable Energy

The independent World Council for Renewable Energy (WCRE) was founded to consider and deal amongst others with the increasing global energy demand, the comprehensive impacts, climate hazards, burdens to the environment, risk of accidents, conflicts around exhausting resources and focus new investments on Renewable Energy and energy efficiency.
www.wcre.org

European Solar Prize

  • European Solar Prize 2017 - call for nominations extended!

    EUROSOLAR awards the European Solar Prize, recognizing innovative projects and initiatives as well as outstanding commitment in the field of renewable energies. Due to the high demand, the application period will be extended by two weeks. Applications can be submitted until 15 June 2017 via our Online-Form.

    You are also welcome to send us proposals about interesting projects / initiatives in the field of renewable energies. Please send us an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 31 May 2017 (also free of formalities).

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  • Application guidelines

    Frequently asked questions:

    How can I apply?

    Applications and proposals for the various prize categories may be submitted during the application period via the online entry form on this website. Alternatively, you may send in your application by e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or post to EUROSOLAR e.V., Kaiser-Friedrich-Straße 11, 53113 Bonn, Germany. Please make sure to provide the materials sent by post also in digital formats (such as CD-ROM or USB stick). A description of the various prize categories can be found below.

    Why should I apply?

    Due to the fact that EUROSOLAR is a non-profit organisation, we cannot pay any prize money.

    Nevertheless, award winners benefit in a variety of ways:
    • The Solar Prize is considered as an international seal of quality
    • Guaranteed attention for the winning projects / initiatives by publicity in the media and the public
    • Appreciation of award winners within the framework of a solemn award ceremony in an European city
    • New possibilities are given for networking as well for making new contacts

    What information does my application has to include?

    Applications must include:
    • Full contact details, including contact name
    • Name of project
    • Abstract/project summary (max. 1,500 characters, including blanks, in English)
    • Application category of choice

    The abstract is a significant part of the application. The judges' first impression of the goals and innovative aspects of the submission will be based on it. Your application can be supplemented by additional documents (such as photographs, brochures, diagrams, newspaper articles, videos). Additional material may be sent by e-mail or post. Ideally, the submissions also include key figures (e.g. 40 % of the consumption is generated from renewable sources) or mention the technology used. In the case of architectural objects, please specify the usable area, energy needs, portion of demand covered by renewable energy, reduction of CO2 emissions and the place/address.

    What do I have to consider in my application?

    Eligible projects are either fully completed or sufficiently advanced to provide first results. The Solar Prize will not be given in recognition of products, books or inventions.

    Please pay attention to the quality of your documents. Please consider which informations and complementary materials are relevant for the assessment process and which are not. In your application, please make a clear reference to the evaluation criteria and describe the extent to which your project or initiative fulfills these requirements. It is also always an advantage, if you visualize your application with pictures and graphics so that the judges can get a better impression.

    For technical reasons you can only upload one file with a maximum file size of 10 MB. If you wish to submit multiple items we recommend that you pack them in a zip file or combine them into one PDF file. If you wish to send in more extensive materials, kindly mail us a digital storage device.

    How can I submit proposals?

    We would be pleased to draw your attention to interesting and innovative projects or initiatives in the field of renewable energies. Proposals can be submitted formless by e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For the better preparation of your nomination, we would be also pleased, if you inform us about your sources, references and further links (for example websites, press releases, etc.).

    How are applications and proposals assessed?


    • Degree of innovation: How does the project differ from existing standard solutions in terms of creativity and originality?
    • Exemplary character: How easily can the idea be transferred and applied by others? Does it encourage imitation?
    • Commitment: To what extent did obstacles and resistance have to be overcome? How much commitment and willpower is behind it?
    • Public effectiveness: Can the project or initiative be well presented in the media? How many people can be reached?
    • Quality of application documents: Are the documents conclusive and plausible? Has reference to the evaluation criteria been taken?
    It should be noted that depending on the category, the weighting of the evaluation criteria varies.

    How are the prize winners selected?

    The individual prize winners are determined by a qualified jury, which is convened and put together by EUROSOLAR every year. The members of the jury are appointed on an objective basis and guarantee a practical and professional assessment of the incoming applications and proposals.

    The European Solar Prize is awarded annually in addition to the national Solar Prizes of the various EUROSOLAR sections. The European Prize Winners will be determined from the applicants for the respective national Solar Prizes and the direct applications to EUROSOLAR.

    After expiry of the application period, the EUROSOLAR head office reviews all applications and prepares the documents for the evaluation process. Afterwards, the prepared application documents are made available to the jury members electronically. In the framework of a joint meeting, the judges make final decisions on the award winners.

    Description of Prize Categories:

    a) Towns/municipalities, council districts, public utilities

    European towns, municipalities, council districts, public utilities with projects for using renewable energies in their council area. The Solar Prize is awarded for versatile and convincing activities with a supply of renewable energy.

    b) Solar architecture and urban planning

    European architects and planning offices, housing associations, towns and other facilities with innovative concepts using renewable energy on single buildings or for whole districts. This category is focused on constructive aspects.

    c) Industrial and commercial companies or farmers

    European companies, cooperatives and agrobusinesses which developed innovative approaches for the market launch of renewable energy or cover their own energy needs with renewable utilization concepts (with special consideration of small businesses).

    d) Local or regional associations/organizations

    European associations and organizations locally or regionally engaged, using renewable energy in various ways.

    e) Owners or operators of renewable energy installations

    Private plus-energy-buildings or zero-emission-buildings and educational institutions in Europe with innovative renewable energy concepts.

    f) Transport and mobility

    Vehicles or transportation systems from Europe powered with renewable energy and working functionally and emission-free.

    g) Media

    Journalists, publicists, agencies and directors who promote and raise public awareness for renewable energy in Europe through television, radio or publications.

    h) Education and vocational training

    European universities, schools, academies and other facilities and initiatives which offer knowledge transfers in the field of renewable energy.

    i) One world cooperation

    Organizations, universities, associations or other initiatives and facilities from Europe which initiated sustainable development cooperation in the field of renewable energy all over the world.

    j) Special achievement prize for individual commitment

    Longterm personal commitment for the use and extension of renewable energy. In this category proposals for individuals are very welcome.

    Legal notice:

    Applications and proposals must be received before the end of the respective application period. A selected panel of qualified judges, appointed by EUROSOLAR, will select the ultimate winning entries. The judges may assign projects to other categories than applied for, if necessary. No liability or responsibility is accepted by EUROSOLAR for materials sent in, including no recognition of any other legal claims associated therewith, such as the return of documents. All decisions are final.

    EUROSOLAR fosters the public perception of the award winners through advertising initiatives in its networks and a festive ceremony. The partizipation in the European Solar Prize Award is free of charge. No prize money will be paid.

    Confidential data from the applications will not be published by EUROSOLAR or passed on to third parties. Honoring texts and public information on the projects/initiatives are communicated and coordinated with the award winners before publication.

    All private and public renewable energy installations, natural and legal persons and as well public bodies in Europe are eligible to participate. The applicant accepts with his/her application the statute of the Solar Prize.

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  • Winners of the European Solar Prize 2016

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  • European Solar Prize 2016 awarded in 'Sant Pau', Barcelona

    On 18th November EUROSOLAR e.V. together with EUROSOLAR Spain and Barcelona City Council awarded nine nominees, in seven categories, from eight different countries with the European Solar Prize 2016. This year’s award ceremony took place in the historical builings of the former hospital 'Sant Pau' in Barcelona – a city committed to sustainable energy.

    In the additional symposium consens was found, that the implementation of a common political framework for a ‘Renewable Energy Union’ has to focus on the different national, regional and local needs and must aim at ambitious renewable energy targets.

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