Dirk Vansintjan, President of REScoop is the Schönauer Stromrebell 2019
The “Schönauer Stromrebell” prize is awarded by a collective of renewable initiatives in the German city of Schönau together with the Elektrizitätswerke Schönau (EWS) and the city of Schönau itself. This annual prize commemorates people who have shown the personal commitment and drive to implement visions, overcome resistance and wholeheartedly support the environment and a sustainable economy.
This weekend, the 2019 Schönauer Stromrebell (the “Electricity Rebel!”) was awarded to Dirk Vansintjan, President of DecarbEurope partner REScoop.
I am delighted to receive this award on behalf of all Ecopower pioneers, employees and co-operators, as well as all members and employees of REScoop.Dirk Vansintjan
A committed energy revolutionist
For more than 30 years, Dirk has been deeply committed to a citizen-supported energy revolution. In 1991, together with eight colleagues sitting around his kitchen table, he founded the energy cooperative Ecopower to promote the expansion of renewable energies in Belgium. This resulted in the largest energy cooperative in Flanders, Belgium, with 60,000 members today, who are supplied with clean electricity by their cooperative.
Ecopower operates 24 wind turbines, three hydropower plants and 300 photovoltaic plants with a total annual electricity yield of 90 GWhrs. Further plants are planned. “In addition, almost half of our members also operate a photovoltaic system privately,” adds Dirk.
Representing citizens at all levels
Dirk’s heart lies in a democratically organised and citizen-supported ecological electricity supply. Because climate change does not stop at national borders, this energy pioneer is also intensively involved at the European level. He was one of the founders of REScoop, the umbrella organisation for citizens’ energy companies formally founded in 2013.
REScoop’s declared aim is to strengthen energy cooperatives and other citizen energy companies through better networking and to actively represent their interests at EU level.
Dirk succeeded in implementing important simplifications for the citizen-supported renewable energy supply in the EU Directive on Renewable Energies adopted at the end of 2018.
On behalf of all DecarbEurope partners, congratulations Dirk!