E38: Special Episode: Unveiling the Social Potential of Energy Communities in Italy

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Join us for a special Italian episode of Energ'Ethic as we uncover the hidden social potential of energy communities in Italy. In this insightful discussion, we explore how energy can drive positive social change, while addressing critical issues like diversity and energy poverty. Discover how these communities go beyond energy production, becoming catalysts for local empowerment and sustainable progress. Dive into the concept of "Energy Justice" and learn how it shapes the future of energy in Italy. Don't miss this unique exploration of the intersection between energy and society.
E38 - Special Episode Energ'Ethic Podcast

This one is a very special episode of Energ’Ethic! While our podcast is usually conducted in English, today, we have something exceptional in store. We’re diving into a thought-provoking discussion that stems from a recent webinar held entirely in Italian, shedding light on a crucial aspect of the energy landscape.

In this episode, we unravelled the layers of “Comunità Energetiche ed Energy Sharing: Svelare un Potenziale Sociale Inesplorato,” a webinar that took place on 28 September 2023 under the auspices of Rete ASSIST, for the PEnTrEn project.

The conversation with first-class experts Dr Aurore Dudka (University of Trento) and Emmanuele Petruzziello (CEO of KOALA, a start-up dedicated to promoting energy sharing) explored the profound social implications of energy beyond its resource aspect. It’s a journey into understanding how energy can be a catalyst for positive social change, with a special focus on Italy.

The webinar’s core objective was to peer beyond the technical and theoretical ideals of energy communities within the Italian context. While the technical landscape holds promise, and the stakeholders are poised to leap into action upon the awaited ministerial decree, there’s a facet that often remains in the shadows – the social and cultural dimensions of energy communities.

As revealed during the discussion, these communities frequently lack diversity, with a noticeable absence of women, youth, and individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds among their ranks. This diversity deficit poses a formidable challenge in addressing energy poverty comprehensively.

But what becomes abundantly clear from this engaging conversation is that energy, within the framework of an “energy community,” is merely the tip of the iceberg. It serves as a pretext for forging social connections, providing training, fostering local initiatives, and creating value – especially for young people and women in underserved areas.

In an era when climate change is transitioning into a pressing social challenge, constructing new reference points that firmly place people at the centre is paramount. This, in essence, embodies the spirit of #energyjustice.

The video recording of this remarkable webinar is also available on the Rete ASSIST website, allowing you to delve even deeper into the insights shared and watch it with automated subtitles.

A heartfelt thanks to Marina Varvesi, Federica Petraroli, and Federica Ragazzo for their unwavering support. Let us know your thoughts on this special episode!

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