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Energy transition for the community: Baranivska ATC




The largest SPP in ATC – SPP «Baranivka»

Constructed by «Podilskiy Energoconsulting» LLC in 2019

Peak power –12.9 MW

Approximate annual output –
13.858 million kWh

Reduction of CO2 emissions –
13613 t/year


Baranivska ATC
is located in the south-western part
of Zhytomyr region.
Area of the ATC:
602 km2
Established on:
December 18
2016

Community
population:

over 26 thousand
Number of
amalgamated
councils:

13

Yurii Savych,
community's Energy Manager

Decentralization signifies opportunities

Decentralization reform has opened new perspectives for the development of local communities.
However, the community's success largely depends on the ability to manage financial and material
resources effectively. When the Baranivka local territorial community was established, more than 100 communal facilities were handed over to its management. Almost all buildings required thermal modernization, and their staff did not know what energy efficient behavior was. Energy sources expenditures were the second largest expense item in the community's budget following wages. Therefore, the leadership made up their mind to implement a system of effective management of energy consumption. The implementation of energy efficiency measures is one of the main sources of significant additional funds. And the saved resources can already be used for infrastructure development.
Energy management system

In order to carry out quality and systematic implementation of energy saving measures and increase the community's energy efficiency level, it is necessary to implement an effective management model, which at the current stage is an energy management system.

What is needed for this?

Firstly, adapt the existing organizational structure of the community. The position of the chief specialist on the organization of efficient energy use- the energy manager of the community was introduced in the city
council staffing. In the structural subdivisions and communal institutions of the city council, which are the managers of budget funds, the employees who, in addition to their main responsibilities, should control energy consumption, have been appointed. Straightforwardly in the institutions like schools, kindergartens, houses of culture, out-patient clinics, etc. competent persons, who monitor a specific building on a daily basis, have been assigned.

Secondly, after the approval of local regulations governing the implementation and operation of the energy management system, we started monitoring the consumption of energy resources at public-sector facilities. Currently, a logbook of energy consumption is being kept for each utility, the data from which are also entered into the specialized software system «ASEM».

International cooperation

In order to ensure strategic planning of energy policy according to international standards, in October 2017 our community joined the leading initiative of the European Union – the Covenant of Mayors for Climate& Energy. The agreement envisages voluntary commitments by municipalities to increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources in their territories. Within the framework of the Covenant, a draft Action Plan for Sustainable Energy Development and Community Climate until 2030 had been prepared, approved by the decision of the Baranivka City Council session in the summer of 2018.

My story

I moved to the newly created position of energy manager from the position of the mayor's advisor. This was facilitated by my participation in the summer of 2017 in a 10-day training on energy efficiency and energy conservation within the project «Increasing the Capacity of ATC in Energy Management
Implementation and Improving the Provision of Energy Efficiency Consulting Services», organized by the German Society for International Cooperation (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit –
GIZ). After the training, I realized how important and necessary energy management is for the community and what great prospects it can open up for its development. Further, the process of raising my professional level was almost constant, and this was facilitated by well-organized training and educational programs of the GIZ program, the national office «Covenant of Mayors – East», the Association of Energy Auditors of Ukraine. Participation in events organized by the State Agency for Energy Efficiency and Energy
Saving, as well as associations of cities, amalgamated territorial communities and «Energy Efficient Cities of Ukraine» was quite useful in terms of training and advanced training.
Community assistance

Apart from the training component, the community received other assistance. According to the applications developed and submitted by me, in 2019-2020 our community won 10 competitive
selections. In results there is a grant support in the form of energy audits with the production of energy
certificates, design estimates and comprehensive thermal modernization of buildings, sets of
measuring equipment for energy managers, free use of software for energy monitoring, as well as
assistance in establishing energy efficiency: a power plant installation and center classroom refurbishing. In addition, I am sincerely grateful for the expert assistance provided by GIZ and the «Covenant of Mayors – East» in developing an Action Plan for Sustainable Energy Development and Climate of our community.

We are also actively cooperating with the State Agency for Energy Efficiency and Energy Saving, with which a corresponding memorandum of partnership was signed in 2019.

Achievements and projects in the energy efficiency sector

Having introduced an energy management system in the community, for the third year in a row we have been reducing energy consumption due to constant control and the energy use optimization.

Although the community's development budget is quite small, several significant energy efficiency projects have been implemented. In particular, more than 700 LED street lights have been installed. The annual potential for electricity savings from such projects is more than 200 thousand kWh.

Due to cooperation with the international financial corporation NEFCO, which provided almost UAH 5 million in soft loans at only 3% per annum in hryvnia, a project on thermal modernization of the
largest educational institution in the community – Baranivka Lyceum №1 was implemented. Due to a subvention from the state budget for the formation of ATC's infrastructure, a similar project was implemented in Polyankivska Secondary School of I-III grades. Thermal modernization works have
a dual effect: they not only reduce energy consumption (in these institutions, the savings in natural
gas consumption are more than 30%), but also create comfortable living conditions for children and
teachers.

Renewable energy

We constantly hear from the media, politicians and activists about climate change and environmental
problems, as well as the need for appropriate changes in civilizational development. These are not just
another «horror story», but exactly what each of us feels. Our community realizes the critical importance
of this issue and does not stand aback from the global movement for climate sustainability. By joining
the Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, in our Sustainable Energy and Climate Action Plan,
we are committed not only to reducing energy consumption but also to increasing renewable
energy consumption. Confidence in the correct movement of the community on the way to RES was
added by my participation in the trip organized by Dena (German Energy Agency) and the NGO «Ecoclub» to Germany in 2019. At Dena's jubilee congress on the implementation of the new energy policy from
government officials and top politicians, despite the differences in their political views on socioeconomic
development, there was one leitmotif: it is only necessary to accelerate change and implement
measures to stimulate the transition to RES. These are not just fine words, since Germany has officially
announced its abandonment of nuclear power plants and the use of coal in the nearest future. And
excursions to the communities of Refelde and Feldheim, where renewable energy sources are
actively being used, only confirmed that the main driver of change can and should be local authorities in
close cooperation with the public and business. The state only needs to create appropriate conditions for
such cooperation.

Therefore, during the autumn of 2019 National Forum «Climate Ambitions of Cities» between our community and the international environmental organization 350.org a memorandum of cooperation
on the prospects of community movement to achieve 100% renewable energy in the energy balance by 2050 was signed. Some will say that these are too ambitious and unattainable goals, and in general – we still have to survive until 2050! And the person will have the point by saying that if nothing is done about the causes and consequences of climate change, in which people are involved, the lives of future generations will be quite tough. As for the ambitious goals, would scientific and technical inventions be possible if their authors did not set seemingly unattainable goals and did not look beyond the horizon? Only those moving forward achieve a goal.

The first steps towards the development of RES generation in the community have already been taken. Thanks to the search for investors and their contribution, in 2017 a small hydroelectric power plant with a capacity of 382 kW started operating on the Sluch River. At the end of 2019, a solar power plant with a total peak capacity of 13 MW appeared near Baranivka. These projects do not only provide additional revenue
to the local budget in the form of land rent, personal income tax, but also contribute to energy
independence and energy security of our community.


Promotion of RES ideas

Moreover, thanks to a grant received from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cooperation
with the NGO «Ecoclub», we have recently completed the implementation of the project «Creation of an Energy Efficiency Center Based on the Baranivka Inter School Resource Center». I came up with the idea during the first Days of Sustainable Energy in the community, which showed that the awareness of residents about the need to implement energy efficiency measures is still quite low. However, the population's interest in obtaining qualified advice on these issues is quite high. During the implementation of the project, the roof of the building of the inter school resource center was refurbished and a solar power plant with a capacity of 10 kW was installed on it, which will cover the company's electricity needs. In
addition, the power plant will serve as a facility to demonstrate the principles of operation and benefits
of RES to the community. Also, one of the premises of the building was repaired and converted
into a classroom: equipped with information stands, a multimedia presentation complex with a
demonstration of the solar power plant in real time; informational and explanatory materials are
distributed here. Upon completion of the quarantine restrictions, we are planning to conduct appropriate
training activities on the basis of the center for the implementation of energy efficiency measures and the benefits of RES for community residents, including students.

Tips for other communities

I would like to emphasize that communities had to take the path of improving energy efficiency
just yesterday. Therefore, those communities that are still considering whether to do so are losing
precious time and opportunities for development, which in the end significantly reduces their overall
competitiveness.

First of all, each community needs to take measures to implement an energy management system with
mandatory monitoring of energy consumption. It is also necessary to start work on appropriate strategic
planning. The best option here is to join the Covenant of Mayors and write your own Sustainable Energy
and Community Climate Action Plan. It is weighty to take advantage of opportunities and establish
cooperation with international support programs and government agencies concerned with the
development of energy efficiency in Ukraine, as well as to learn about the positive practices of other
communities that have already taken steps in this direction. This will not only allow us to choose the
optimal development path, but also save a lot of time in passing the necessary stages. And, of course, it is
extremely important to implement energy efficiency measures and RES in communities, because that is our
future.
The development of energy efficiency and the implementation of RES is not only a support for the
global trend of maintaining climate sustainability, but also a possibility for communities to ensure their
energy security, as well as to receive significant additional investments and a strong impetus for further
development. So, join up!