Discussion with Maya Andreou, CEO, Energy Community River, Athens, Greece

Community Energy River (CER) is a startup which supports the energy community creation in Greece (for which there is a law in Greece) so that local citizens produce and consume their own clean energy. Citizens are at the heart of CER’s work and interventions and they believe that knowledge and participation ensures people get best possible benefits both economically and environmentally. CER’s goal is to see citizens play an active role in the energy transition, an energy system that will move away from centralized to decentralized which CER believes would be fairer and benefit people the most. They bring together people from different sectors, including teachers, engineers, freelancers, public servants, old and young people, and those who are passionate about the new technology, clean energy, and want a better future for the country, to talk about cooperatives and why green energy is important.

Watch below the Trailer with Maya.

CER is running a project funded by the public green fund which focuses on energy cooperatives, energy saving and green energy; they have installed small solar park for the citizens to learn how the green energy is produced; and they are developing networks and cooperation needed among the various actors in this field.

The most important lesson learned by CER is that people need motivation and support to strengthen cooperation, and if it works in a fair and sustainable way, good things will happen as a result. They work with schools and explore how with small energy measures they can improve the situation. Working with pupils is very rewarding as they love to participate and know how to improve things. A significant outcome of their work and advocacy is the start of the first citizens energy cooperative in Athens, in last week of October 2019. And they are developing a network of schools and working to empower them in a more participative way to undertake small energy interventions.

They collaborate with various actors in Greece and Balkans, and this year Maya participated at the Philanthropy for Green Ideas competition organized by the Balkan Green Foundation in Tirana, Albania, where CER won the first prize. This was an opportunity for CER to establish contacts and exchange experiences and lessons with new possible partners.

Watch below the Webinar - entire discussion with Maya.

In November 2019, CER will participate at a conference in New York on sustainability and CER will be contribute to discussions on energy sector in the Balkans where a White Paper will be produced.      

To learn more about Energy Community River and/or get in touch with Maya and her colleagues to explore potential for partnership and collaboration, follow this link https://communityenergyriver.com/