international newsletter
  No. 17  -  April 2011
Accueil > International Newsletter No. 17 > Expertise - ISSN 1957-7184
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Local Climate-Energy Plans

An exportable system


Since July 2010 and the passing of the Grenelle 2 Law, all French municipalities with a population of more than 50,000 must introduce a Local Climate-Energy Plan. ADEME provides them with the tools to help them with this task. With some adjustments, these tools can also be used by foreign municipalities.

French municipalities with a population of more than 50,000 have until the end of 2012 to implement a Local Climate-Energy Plan (PCET). This includes an action plan to reduce the greenhouse emissions from their activ­ities and those that are managed as a result of their regulatory responsibilities (waste management, regional development and town planning, public transport, etc.). They must also determine the potential impact of climate change within their territory and make the necessary adaptations. “The aim is to incorporate climate into all local policies”, explained Éric Prud’homme, Head of ADEME’s Territorial Coordination.
Certain conditions are essential for the success of a PCET. Political ownership of the project, for example, while also appointing a project manager and/or project leader to steer the plan and identify the appropriate contacts in each department. Support for the project – from the municipal services and other local and regional authorities, companies, the population, etc. – is fundamental. “By taking action solely within the sphere of its direct responsibilities, a municipality can look at reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 10 to 20%”, explained Éric Prud’homme. “By working with its economic and social partners, it can reduce them by more than 70%.”

Brazil is one of the first countries to have launched a PCET project
“The PCET is not new. It was actually introduced in 2004 as part of France’s National Climate Plan, and more than 200 French municipalities have already adopted this type of approach voluntarily”, pointed out Julie Laulhere, Engineer with ADEME’s Outside Training Department. To help them, ADEME has developed a certain number of tools: notably the Bilan Carbone® used to perform a diagnosis of the emissions of a municipality and its territory. ADEME has also published a method guide1 and created a specific PCET website. ADEME also provides trainings for the relevant stakeholders.
For greater efficiency, a PCET can be combined with other systems to combat climate change. “Agenda 21”, for example, can help boost all stakeholder support for a PCET. A PCET can also be coupled with the “Covenant of Mayors” introduced by the European Commission in 2009. By signing this document, a municipality undertakes not only to combat climate change, but also to produce an annual review of its actions. The European Energy Award label, and its French equivalent the Cit’ergie label, may also act as a very effective lever. “Through a total 80 measures, this tool provides a snapshot of the situation and defines a greenhouse gas emission reduction plan in six strategic areas: local development, property, energy supply, water and wastewater, mobility, and internal organisation, communication and cooperation”, explained Éric Prud’homme. “This delivers the bases for compiling a PCET.” /

1. Construire et mettre en œuvre un Plan Climat-Énergie Territorial, (Build and implement a Local Climate-Energy Plan) downloadable from  –  Only in French.

Go further

Launch of the first PCETs abroad
Porto Alegre (Brazil) is the first foreign municipality to have launched a PCET project. Financed by FASEP (Brazilian aid fund for the private sector), it was launched in February 2010 by French consultants EnvirOconsult, with an additional dimension compared with the French system: improve air quality. Other foreign cities are about to follow suit, for example, Rabat (Morocco). An agreement was also signed between ADEME and the United Nations Development Programme (UNPD) in October 2008 to assist emerging countries in implementing a Climate Plan. The first of these project is about to be rolled out in the Fatick region (Senegal). “There are still few PCETs abroad, as they require time and resources, especially when the system has to be adapted to a national or local context that is very different to that prevailing in France”, explained Cécile Martin-Phipps, in charge of partnerships with bi- and multi-lateral funding organisations, at ADEME’s International Affairs Department. The Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok (Thailand) is currently working on adapting the system to the Asian context, which should lead to an increased number of initiatives in this region.