Urenio Watch Watch: Cities

SolarShare: P2P energy trading pilot project

SolarShare is Singapore’ s first peer to peer (P2P) energy trading platform. It is a pilot project that allows consumers to purchase renewable electricity produced by private solar panel owners, via an online marketplace from across the city. Prosumers with solar panels installed on their rooftops can sell their excess green energy. Consumers can use SolarShare to convert to green energy at competitive prices, supporting their local community.

New paper: COVID, CITIES and CLIMATE: Historical Precedents and Potential Transitions for the New Economy

According to the author, the 2020 collapse of the global economy due to Covid-19 pandemic has enabled us to think about long term trends and what the future could hold for our cities and regions, especially due to the climate agenda. Having as a starting point the current pandemic, this paper sets out the historical precedents for economic transitions after collapses that unleash new technologically based innovation waves.  These are shown to be associated with different energy and infrastructure priorities and their transport and resulting urban forms.

REFLOW: Co-Creating Circular Resource Flows in Cities

REFLOW Approach: Sally Bourdon, Manuela Reyes Guerrero. IAAC
REFLOW Approach: Sally Bourdon, Manuela Reyes Guerrero. IAAC

REFLOW is an EU H2020 project, from 2019 to 2022, that seeks to understand and transform urban material flows and to co-create and test circular and regenerative solutions in urban and peri-urban areas across Europe. The vision of REFLOW is to develop circular and regenerative cities through the re-localisation of production and the reconfiguration of material flows at different scales, leveraging Fab Labs and makerspaces as catalysts for wide-scale collaboration and co-creation conducive to systemic, sustainable change. The project operates at the international level, mobilising existing networks and movements that are working towards a new productive model for cities such as Circular Cities, C40 Cities and Fab City Global Initiative.

New paper: An Investigation on the Feasibility of Near-Zero and Positive Energy Communities in the Greek Context

This paper is following the EU target of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Near Zero Energy and Positive Energy communities are expected to play a significant part of the strategy that will be followed. Within this context, the authors aim to investigate the feasibility of a new-built positive energy neighborhood and the retrofit of an existing neighborhood to near zero energy performance in the city of Alexandroupolis, Greece. The study may act as a roadmap for the uptake and development of positive energy and near-zero energy communities in Greek Cities, similar to Alexandroupolis. Furthermore, it can be used as a decision support tool for policy makers, when assessing alternative options towards the path of decarbonization of EU economy by 2050.

New report on Citizen-led data governance

The rise of the online economy is based on the opportunities to extract value from data that is produced by digital technologies. As opposed to data brokers that gain value buying and selling personal information, this report argues for radically new ideas about how the value of our personal information can be returned back to citizens. Rather than focusing on how making money from data, it focuses on how data can benefit society as a whole, exploring the idea of ‘data commons’. The report is entitled “Common Knowledge: Citizen-led data governance for better cities” and is part of the decode H2020 project.

Cancelation of Sidewalk Toronto Smart City project

Sidewalk Toronto project, developed by Sidewalk Labs, was suspended earlier this month. The company claimed “unprecedented economic uncertainty’ caused by the current pandemic.

The project consists of a highly controversial topic, due to privacy concerns. Sidewalk Labs, a Google affiliate, designed a large-scale project towards the transformation of the Waterfront of Toronto into a smart city.