The role of territorial competitions in the energy transition

By Audrey Tanguy

By questioning the spatial organization of energy production and distribution systems, the energy transition significantly modifies intra- and inter-territorial relations, which are based on a dual logic of cooperation and competition. Power relationships among various stakeholders alter and their characterization is essential when trying to better understand the evolution of a territory’s metabolism. By adopting a multidisciplinary approach to the study of metabolism in the case of a port territory, this paper aims to examine the typologies of territorial competitions at different scales (local, regional and global). Moreover, it explains the role these competitive relationships can play in the implementation of energy transition projects. The multiscalar analysis reveals a diversity of competitions that do not refer all to the same issues. It also highlights the impact of the spatial perception of the stakeholders on the nature of a relationship (competition versus complementarity) between different elements (between resources, between territories). Finally, this research shows that while competitive relationships can sometimes hinder the implementation of a territorial transition, they can also lead to promising complementarities within energy projects.

  • competitions
  • urban metabolism
  • energy transition
  • port
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