Village description :
Stanz im Mürztal is located in a rural area in the province of Styria in Austria. It has a total population of 1 844 inhabitants and a surface area of 70 km2. The region is industrial and has been affected by economic structural change in recent decades.
As in many European regions, people tend to move into metropolitan areas, which is one reason for depopulation. The economy is small-scaled, which is reflected in the high percentage of people who commute from the municipality.
Our village decided to search for new ways to deal with these challenges. Therefore, we started a ‘Local Agenda 21’ process in 2016 to enable an integrated development of the village with the knowledge and support of the inhabitants. Since then, about 80 active residents deliver ’hands on’ on the development of a local strategy and implementation of measures in different areas with great commitment.
Over the past few years, the issues of enhancing the village centre, the creation of new mobility options and measures to improve the quality of life have been addressed.
In the future, we want to focus more on the issues of self-sufficient energy production at local level and support to energy-producing communities. The goal is to increase the supply of renewable energy sources, which is currently around 30%, up to 100%. This is combined with multipliable, innovative business and cooperation models for the financing and flexible use of these energy sources. This also helps to ensure the sustainable economic development of the community.
Furthermore, we want to deal with the question of voluntary work: we are fortunate to have many people involved in community life. Thus, we want to explore the question of how this situation can be secured in the future and what non-monetary compensation there can be.