Energy Communities

Community ownership of energy facilities or other kind of local partnerships can contribute in achieving distributional justice, since cost and benefits sharing among citizens, developers and local authorities is more easily implemented.

Energy community initiatives may be based on different legal forms such as partnerships (including public-private co-ownership with local authorities), cooperatives, community trusts and foundations, limited liability companies, non-profit customer-owned enterprises, housing associations and municipal ownership.

The WinWind project has analysed numerous examples of energy communities across Europe (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, France, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and UK); particularly,  for Germany, Spain, Italy  the cases were grouped into two categories: community ownership in a broad sense, and energy cooperatives, in which the shareholders participate also in the governance of the project.


  • Lack of local skills to support renewable energy communities
  • No legislation framework


  • Distributional justice
  • Optimization of local resources

Find out more

The WinWind project highlighted the importance of renewable energy community initiatives. Here below further readings:

On concepts, key aspects and examples
Screening of Technical and Non-Technical regulations, guidelines and recommendations pages 59-61

Assessment of presence and characteristics of energy community across WinWind partners
Screening of Technical and Non-Technical regulations, guidelines and recommendations pages 62-63

Examples of Best Practices based on energy communities
Synthesis and Comparative Analysis of Best Practice Case Studies for Promoting the Social Acceptance pages 79-96, 203-213

WinWind has received funding from European Union's Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under Grant Agreement Nº 764717. The sole responsibility for any errors or omissions made lies with the consortium. The content does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Commission. The European Commission is also not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein