As all resources are finite and their use impacts the environment, it is important to define an action strategy that ensures available resources are used efficiently. To define an appropriate strategy, it is first necessary to perform an energy and environmental diagnosis, complemented by a sensitivity analysis regarding probable scenarios, namely:
a) to identify the energy matrix (characterize primary energy consumption, final energy and CO2 emissions associated with such consumption);
b) to identify interventions that can reduce the analysed consumption;
c) to create scenarios of consumption evolution, considering perspectives of population and economic development, and different degrees of implementation regarding the measures identified in b) and analysis of costs and benefits associated with each scenario.
Once the energy diagnosis has been performed, an energy strategy can be established, identifying opportunities. Properly reported, these steps create the conditions for the strategy to be defined and assumed by the competent policy makers.
The Energy Plan is defined and implemented based on this vision of the strategy for energy and environmental management at local level, and compiles all measures identified and quantified by strategy implementation for a given time.