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START technical assistance

The secretariat’s technical assistance to regions in transition (START) leaves a legacy of enhanced transition-related expertise, capabilities, and capacities in the coal+ regions that receive support.


What is START?

START provides tailored, short-term support to coal+ regions across a wide array of transition topics. It assists efforts to decarbonise energy production and usage, diversify economic activities, and progress social development in regions and communities that are heavily affected by the transition away from fossil fuels.

START can help overcome shortcomings in local knowledge and capacities in areas such as: strategy development, governance, stakeholder consultation and engagement, community cohesion and resilience, and project identification and assessment. It can be used to fill knowledge or capacity gaps and to complement other technical assistance and capacity-building instruments.

What can START provide?

START provides tailored support to assist coal+ regions, sub-regions, and local communities in achieving a just transition away from fossil fuel-based activities. Support typically spans 50-100 “person days” delivered over 6-10 months.

START achievements

START technical assistance delivered so far has covered a wide range of transition-related thematic areas and topics, notably including strategy development, governance, stakeholder consultation and engagement, community cohesion and resilience, and project identification and assessment.

Four new START recipients selected

Following the open call for coal, peat, lignite and oil shale regions (‘coal+ regions’), four applications have been selected to receive technical assistance from the Initiative for Coal Regions in Transition’s START programme. This third round of START support will run from the spring of this year into early 2025. The four selected regions are:

●      Asturias, Spain

●      Gorj, Romania

●      Lower Silesia (Świdnica), Poland

●      Zasavje, Slovenia

The Secretariat looks forward to engaging with these regions to support just transition efforts there.

15 recipients
sub-national actors
So far, 15 teams have received START technical assistance in support of their just transition work.
10 countries
spanning EU countries
START recipients represent regions across ten EU countries, spanning the breadth of the continent.
30+ outputs
knowledge products
The guidance, reports, and other knowledge produced as part of START are publicly available.

Supported regions

Click through the fields below to access outputs and additional information about START support, which may help guide your own regions’ transition.

These START recipients represent a diverse cross-section of regions and communities. They differ across features including resource type (hard coal, lignite, peat), socio-economic structure, industrial characteristics (mono-industrial and diversified) and geographic attributes (rural, urban, endowment of natural resources and assets). They are also at different stages of their transition processes. Such regional variety contributes to a rich exchange of transition lessons.

To ensure coordinated and integrated support to START regions, the Secretariat works closely with relevant European Commission partners, including the Directorates-General for Energy, Regional and Urban Policy, and for Structural Reform Support, as well as other providers of support, such as the World Bank.