Local energy transition experiments for a low-carbon society

train of the Bernese Oberland Railway
On the way to a climate-neutral region: A train of the Bernese Oberland Railway travelling through the project region. Photo: Berner Oberland Bahn

Climate change poses major challenges to tourism and mountain regions. It demands comprehensive changes in housing, transport, and the economy. If the necessary transformations are tackled actively and planned jointly, this can open up many great opportunities for regional development.

Pilot project for innovations in the Bernese Oberland region

“Local energy transition experiments for a low-carbon society” is a pilot project for promotion of such joint processes. It aims to develop and implement ideas towards a climate-neutral society in the Swiss Alpine region “Oberland-Ost” (Canton of Bern).

Emphasis is placed on locally adapted energy innovations that are co-initiated and co-developed by local stakeholders. Experiences gained in implementation can also be used to identify and address hurdles in the institutional framework. Lastly, the selected innovations can be evaluated regarding how well they contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Project activities

Key stakeholders from the region, municipalities, local tourism and business, and civil society are working together with scientists from CDE and the Wyss Academy for Nature, as well as federal and cantonal representatives, in order to:

  • conduct a problem analysis aimed at determining key areas for development;
  • develop different visions for a climate-neutral tourism region and identify possible ways to achieve it;
  • plan a “transition agenda” with concrete steps, and implement them in an experiment phase;
  • evaluate the process and derive lessons from it.

Role of science

The role of the researchers is to organize and moderate the process together with the Office of Environment and Energy of the Canton of Bern. Additionally, the researchers prepare scientific background information, calculate energy use, and identify good examples from other regions. They record the views of residents and vacationers, in addition to accompanying implementation of the “experiments”.

Workshops with local and regional stakeholders and qualitative and quantitative surveys are conducted alongside scientific research.

By documenting and publicizing the whole process and its results, the goal is to take the knowledge obtained and put it to use in the development of other regions.


Impulse zur gelebten Nachhaltigkeit

Am Tourismusforum Berner Oberland 2023 in Interlaken stellten Stephanie Moser, CDE, und Alina von Allmen, Regionalkonferenz Oberland-Ost, das Projekt «CO2-freie Tourismusregion Oberland-Ost» vor. Stephanie Moser zeigte auf, wie Berechnungen zu den erwarteten Hitzetagen die Region betreffen könnten. Es reiche nicht, eine Vision zu haben, jetzt gehe es um die konkrete Umsetzung, sagte die CDE-Wissenschaftlerin.
Date: 4.6.2023 | Source: Jungfrau Zeitung

Präparieren bald E-Bullys die Pisten im Oberland? …

... oder zischt bald ein Wasserstoff-Schiff über den Brienzersee? Liefern Skigebiete bald erneuerbare Energie? – Diese und andere Ideen stehen im Fokus des Projekts «CO2-neutrale Tourismusregion Oberland-Ost, Interlaken, Jungfrau».
Date: 17.11.2022 | Source: Jungfrau Zeitung

Klima-Experiment im Berner Oberland

CDE-Wissenschaftlerin Stephanie Moser im Interview zu den Zielen des Projekts "Lokale Energie-Transitions-Experimente für eine klimaneutrale Gesellschaft", der Frage, warum das Berner Oberland Ost Pilotregion ist und weshalb Innovationen im Energiebereich nicht immer technischer Natur sein müssen.

Date: 27.1.2021 | Source: Radio Rabe

Photo: Manu Friederich

Workshop «Klimaneutrale Tourismusregion Oberland-Ost», 17. Juni 2022

Eine gemeinsame Umsetzungsagenda für eine klimaneutrale Tourismusregion Oberland-Ost entwickeln: Trotz Rekordtemperaturen fanden sich am 17. Juni 2022 zahlreiche Vertreter*innen der Zivilgesellschaft, Mobilitäts- und Tourismusbranche, Energieversorger, Privat-, Land- und Forstwirtschaft, Kanton, Regionalkonferenz und Gemeinden in Interlaken ein, um an gemeinsamen Ideen zu arbeiten, wie der Region Oberland-Ost der Wandel in Richtung Klimaneutralität gelingen kann.

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