Above: Energy Team
3-Layer Module for Behavioural Change and Action in Greve

Experience in the REBUS partnership has shown the importance of well-trained staff dealing with energy efficiency and of well-informed building users. In this context, the Pilot Action tested a full capacity building programme seeking to address these points in Tuscany (IT).  

The pilot was carried out with a selected number of energy actors from public administrations, namely beneficiaries of ERDF; calls launched at regional level - course participants were energy managers and technicians from these administrations.  

Capacity building to support this has allowed for increased capacity within the scope of the REBUS project, and behavioural change has been structured into 3 stages of measures. This capacity building programme was structured on the basis of 2 interregional experiences from the project:- Energy Renovation Path (ERP) developed thanks to all partners work, and Good Practice from Durham County Council “The Big Switch Off”

The 3 stages of measures within the pilot action can be summarised as follows:  

  1. Planning: behavioural change in relation to understanding and choice of technologies, processes and methodologies to be taken into account when planning energy efficiency renovation works
  2. Management: behavioural change in relation to understanding, application and use of technologies, processes and methodologies to be taken into account when managing energy efficiency renovation works
  3. Monitoring: behavioural change in relation to data provision and collection during the application of technologies, processes and methodologies, including evaluation of appropriate monitoring tools

The 3-layer module will provide the Regional Government of Tuscany (Managing Authority) with a tested solution ensuring increased energy savings, at very limited costs, thus encouraging the uptake of similar approaches in the regional operational programme. 

In practical terms, from August-September 2019, ARRR emailed and called 149 local authorities and 23 health services/hospitals that submitted successful proposals in the above mentioned ERDF calls. The aim of inviting them to the 'We Save Energy' series of meetings in ARRR offices. 

These 'We Save Energy' meetings were between 9th October and 17th December 2019, and were structured into 10 information sessions focusing on the following topics:

  • Overview and presentation (1 session)
  • Planning (2 sessions)
  • Management of improvements (3 sessions)
  • Monitoring (3 sessions)
  • Final event and conclusions (1 session)

The Local Council of Greve in Chianti took part and showed interest to putting in practice the learning achieved, with thanks to these meetings. They involved the highest political level, including Mayor, Paolo Sottani, and Environment Minister, Simona Forzoni, and committed to test an experience like the one carried out in Durham,UK. 

At the end of January 2020, an official decision of the Local Council kicked off the test, involving the “Palazzo della Torre” building. Elected members, technicians and employees working at Palazzo della Torre were involved. The objectives of the test were explained, with a focus on the specific needs of their Local Council and the connected actions to be carried out. The high interest of participants was demonstrated thanks to the lively debate following the session. 

Communication and dissemination material was adapted to make it more engaged for the target audience. Specifically, the Facebook page "Europe for Tuscany" was used as a tool for connecting and disseminating the initiative. 

An internal Energy Team was established, supported by ARRR expert Sergio Gatteschi, and lead by Simone Coccia from the Local Council. The team assessed the entire building, checking the energy-related status of each room.  

The pilot action became a reality during March 2020, with behaviour related changes taking place and monitored between 2nd to 31st March. Monitoring tasks included many relevant measures:

  • Collection of electricity consumption data for March in previous years
  • Daily meter readings
  • Registering and organising data collection for energy consumption

Furthermore, specific signs were designed urging users to adjust their energy-consuming behaviour:

  • Keep Attic Door Closed
  • Turn Off Computer Lights and Halogen Light at Copier
  • Turn Off Lights Not Necessary
  • Keep Heating Switched Off in Unused Rooms  

Despite COVID-19, and Greve in Chianti being a small Local Council in the Tuscan countryside, civil servants kept working at their premises following all the necessary social distancing measures. 

In April, the Energy Team collected the data and studied the results. Improved behaviour of building users led to savings amounting to 11.55% compared to 2019 and 33.68% compared to 2015. 

The pilot was given visibility during the online event “Friday for Present”,organised by Greve Local Council in Chianti to celebrate the World Environment Day on 5th June 2020.