Buildings’ energy consumption is one of the major challenges in EU cities with renovation presenting a major opportunity at the same time. The opportunities arise as the existing buildings represent more than 98% of the overall building stock. Furthermore, about 35% of the EU buildings are over 50 years old.

Concerning the Energy sector of the GR/AL CB area, 2 general findings can be stated:

1. The AL implementing legislations both on renewable energy and for energy efficiency are still lacking. In addition, implementation of the national energy efficiency action plan is delayed.As a result, there is no progress in the field of renewable energy sources and in the field of energy-saving in buildings.

2. The mountainous and semi-mountainous nature of the participating cross-border regions constitutes an obstacle in the optimization of the energy sector due to its inconsistence and to the restricted access to alternative energy networks.

Despite the fact that, climate conditions both in GR & AL encourage the use of Renewable Energy Sources in the building sector,paradoxically,they are not developed.The inadequate policies/systems for efficient use of resources in Albania, as well as, the lack of common energy strategy between GR & AL (policy alignment) should be noted as the main weaknesses of the energy sector at CB level, while effective building renovation related information and knowledge supported by integrated IT tools is missing.

However, great opportunities arising for CBC, by utilizing the technological advancements in energy efficiency of buildings and renewable energy sources (RES).

GREAT SUN project aims to promote energy efficiency by developing and implementing strategies, using real-world examples, for improving energy efficiency in CB local government operations. The GREAT SUN project’s overall objective is in full accordance with the programme’s specific objective of the thematic priority in which belongs.

The main outputs of the project (67% of the total budget) concerns the 3 Energy retrofit projects that will take place at the CB area. (2 GR old stone masonry public schools and 1 AL public administration building).

The CB cooperation is demonstrated through the joint investigations on energy demand and consumption by implementing Energy Efficiency Small-scale Retrofits at selected CB public buildings.These demo projects serves as case studies/pilot energy projects, for joint research on best practices for achieving building energy efficiency, while various educational and training actions are also foreseen under the project’s implementation.Additionally, innovative ICT tools will be jointly developed, utilizing in that way the experience of every PB under a participatory planning procedure. Thus, a cooperation network will be set up that can, with time & reasonable effort, expand and multiply its effect and results in the GR/AL CB area.

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