Local Governance

Through the project “Local Initiatives for a Sustainable Ukraine” (LINK Ukraine), five partner municipalities (Cherkasy, Poltava, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lubny and Berdychiv) are cooperating with the REC in order to improve local planning processes in the field of energy security, with the support of the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment. In July, discussions took place on the local environmental situation and strategies to improve energy self-sufficiency. The identified needs of project beneficiaries were used to tailor the LINK project. A statement of mutual cooperation was signed with all five municipalities to officially endorse the LINK Ukraine project. By December, the REC had signed a memorandum of understanding with Lubny and Cherkasy, and three other municipalities announced a signing date in January 2016.

The first phase of the project “Local Environmental and Energy-Related Action Plans (LEAPs) for Sustainable Development, Energy Diversification and Civic Engagement in Communities in Ukraine” implemented with the financial support of the U.S. Department of State, came to an end in December after 15 months. The project supported local communities in Ukraine (the municipalities of Cherkasy, Poltava and Ivano-Frankivsk) to improve their environmental and energy planning and management. It also assisted local governments in their endeavours to combat environmental degradation and energy inefficiency. Throughout the implementation period, the project enhanced the professional capacities of local governments and initiated and guided the development of LEAPs.

The REC conference "Strengthening Local Environmental Planning and Environmental Civil Society in Ukraine: Cities as Drivers of Sustainable Development in Ukraine", which took place in Kyiv, Ukraine, on October 19 and 20, attracted more than 110 stakeholders. The event included an official kick-off for the LINK project, and was an opportunity to share the results of plans developed within the LEAPs project as a roadmap to sustainable development, which was presented to donors, investors, and representatives of other municipalities.

Within the Water and Security component of the project “Sustainable Use of Transboundary Water Resources and Water Security Management” (WATER SUM), supported by  the Government of Sweden through Sida, Jordan and Tunisia were selected as focus countries following the inception phase. Based on stakeholder consultations, the initial training process was launched in the eight self-governing territories selected for the development of local water security action plans: the municipalities of Al Karak, Jerash, Al-Salt and Ajloun in Jordan; and the delegations of Nefza, Bir Mcherga, Matmata and Sidi Ali Ben Aoun in Tunisia.

REC Albania has been very active in supporting local government units (LGUs) at the governance level, and in service delivery. The focus has been on providing policy guidance for the major Administrative-Territorial Reform that took place in June. The main activities carried out to support LGUs were in the areas of flood risk management, disaster risk reduction and solid waste management. A total of 61 Albanian LGUs were supported at policy level; 28 LGUs received direct support in waste management planning; six LGUs received technical support for landfill operations and costing; one LGU received full support (both governance and technical); and more than 500 people participated in national and local-level events.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, within the project “Local Environmental Action Planning (LEAP) as an Instrument for Municipality Development”, two municipalities adopted LEAP documents for long-term sustainable development. Investment projects were developed and two pilot actions were financed to improve the coverage of the population in the municipalities of Kreševo and Pale with primary waste selection and waste collection.

Local Governance
The LINK project supports energy security planning processes in selected municipalities in Ukraine.