Access To Land

UpSOL Training on Agriphotovoltaic, Communication and European Citizen Initiatives

3 packed days to get better in what we do.

From 19.06.2024 to 21.06.2024, members of the Access to Land (A2L) network gathered in Brussels for a three-day seminar under the Erasmus UPSOL project, focusing on advocacy, particularly on the topic of Agriphotovoltaic (APV). This event brought together key stakeholders, including Terre en Vue, Netzwerk Flächensicherung, ADRI, Eco-Ruralis, Terre de Liens, and several external experts

UpSol Partners at fielf visit of Agriphotovoltaic project in Wallonia

Day 1: Legal and Administrative Landscape Analysis

The first day was dedicated to a thorough analysis of the legal and administrative landscapes of Agriphotovoltaic at both the EU and national levels. Blanche Magarinos-Rey from Artemisia provided an extensive training session, offering a detailed overview of current regulations and potential legal challenges. This session aimed to equip participants with the knowledge necessary to navigate and influence policy effectively.

The Afternoon included a session with Carsten Berg, an expert on European Citizen Initiative (ECI) campaigns. Berg explained the ECI process, its advantages, and challenges, with a particular focus on the upcoming ECI on the Right to Food, which includes a significant paragraph on the Right to Land. This session highlighted the strategic importance of the ECI and how A2L could align its efforts with this broader campaign.

Workshop with Christian Berg on ECIs

Day 2: Field Visit and Communication Workshop

The second day began with a focus on our communication strategies in a workshop led by designer Angela Wittchen. Participants began by identifying and analyzing target groups, including farmers, advocacy organizations, local authorities, and EU decision-makers. Through exercises like SWOT analysis and the "Good Fairy" exercise, we explored our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and crafted ideal communication outcomes.
The workshop also involved developing specific communication goals and strategies tailored to different audiences. This included creating a concise and compelling flyer to present our network effectively to decision-makers and potential partners.
Overall, the workshop was instrumental in enhancing our communication toolkit, ensuring that our advocacy efforts are more focused and impactful. The outcomes will guide our future communication initiatives, helping us to engage more effectively with our target audiences and advance our mission.

On the Afternoon a field visit to an Agriphotovoltaic installation in Wallonia took place. This visit allowed participants to see APV technology in action and to understand its practical applications and risks on more pressure on already pressured land markets like the Belgian one. Following the visit, a debate was held with the Terre en Vue team, and the famers union FUGEA where participants discussed the potential and challenges of AV in the context of sustainable agriculture and land use.

Consortium Meeting on the Third Day

On the third day of our seminar in Brussels, the A2L consortium held a crucial meeting to discuss ongoing projects, upcoming events, and strategic plans. Key topics included:

 Erasmus UPSOL Project Updates: Discussions on the project’s timeline, intermediary report requirements, and financial management. Partners were reminded to submit their financial and narrative reports for the period of April to June by mid-July.

 BILIM Forum Preparation: Updates on the agenda for the upcoming BILIM Forum in Bucharest, with a focus on integrating sessions on the Right to Land and Access to Land. It was emphasized that the forum should extend the A2L network’s reach to Eastern Europe.

 Advocacy and Communication Strategies: Maarten and Ramona were tasked with preparing an action plan for A2L’s advocacy strategy, to be shared with UPSOL partners by September. The importance of utilizing Brussels trips to strengthen connections with EU institutions was also highlighted.

This consortium meeting was pivotal in aligning our efforts and ensuring that all partners are on track with their tasks and contributions to the A2L network’s mission. The detailed action plans and upcoming events are set to further our advocacy and outreach efforts across Europe.

Upcoming Events

As part of our ongoing advocacy efforts, we are preparing for the next A2L advocacy field visit in Romania, scheduled for September. This visit will occur in two locations:

1. Bucharest (September 5-7): In the context of the BILIM Alliance forum, which aims to strengthen coalitions with Eastern European organizations focused on agroecology. A session will be dedicated to the Right to Land, and a workshop on Access to Land will be organized.

2. Alunișu (September 8-10): Participants will visit ALPA, where further discussions and activities related to AV and sustainable land use will take place.

We encourage all A2L members, even those not part of the Erasmus UPSOL project, to join this visit.


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