Supported by the National Climate Protection Initiative (NKI) of the Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Protection, and Reactor Safety (BMU), the fourth workshop for the scientific monitoring of the municipalities within the project "Master Plan 100% Climate Protection" took place on 2 and 3 September 2013 in Göttingen.
The 19 master plan municipalities have set particularly ambitious climate protection goals for themselves and have pushed to reduce their energy use by 50% and their greenhouse gas emissions by 95% by 2050. The four-year support of these "beacon" municipalities, began in May 2012, is greatly in the interest of the BMU: Keeping in mind the national goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80 to 95% relative to 1990 levels by 2050, these are precisely the municipalities that can make a big contribution to emissions reductions, due to their proximity to large energy consumers or because of the need for their building stock to be renovated.
For the successful implementation of the ambitious plans, it is essential to link actors from the master plan process together and to promote the collective learning process.
The fourth workshop was hosted by the master plan municipality of Göttingen and offered a fitting framework for gaining new insights and for professional exchange in the Conference center at the Old Observatory. The event, which included not only the master plan municipalities, but also representatives of the BMU, of the project administrator Jülich (PtJ), and of the scientific monitoring support group, was opened with a short speech by Thomas Dienberg, Göttingen's city councilor for construction, and over the course of two days addressed a broad spectrum of municipal climate protection issues in numerous topic areas.
The participants were next invited to a platform for the intensive exchange of structurally-specific challenges facing counties, large cities and smaller municipalities in parallel working groups. Further discussions were held regarding the areas of supplemental financing concepts and strategies for a successful approach to implementation of the master plan. Assessing individual measures requires specific measures of success and (flexible) indicators, such as with the introduction of "energy saving checks" and the adaptation of concrete case studies from the circle of master plan municipalities. An "Exchange Café" offered a space for discussing and developing future cooperative activities.
Since the beginning of the project's scientific monitoring in August 2012, three workshop and networking events have already been held in Berlin and Hannover for representatives of the municipalities. These events were dedicated to the topics of establishing a master plan, institutionalization, as well as stakeholder participation. Building upon these insights and the needs of the master plan municipalities, the fourth "Master Plan 100% Climate Protection" workshop presented another important building block for the successful implementation of municipal climate protection strategies. The fifth workshop in support of the master plan municipalities will be held on 17 and 18 December 2013 in the master plan municipality of Kempten.
The notably diverse group, in terms of both size and structure, of 19 master plan municipalities will be scientifically supported and lead in their strategy development and implementation. The support program is being carried out through the BMU in the framework of the NKI and with funds from the federal government's Energy and Climate Funds (EKF). The support is being carried out over four years and covers 80% of the municipalities' costs. In total, 9.33 million Euros in funds have been set aside for the 19 cities, communities, and counties. A distinctive climate and energy policy profile, the availability of the necessary know-how within the administration, scope, depth, and the feasibility of the implementation strategy, as well as the degree of participation that residents had in the development and implementation of the master plan process, among other factors, were all taken into account when selecting the master plan municipalities.