The European Commission proposed on 30 November 2016 new wide-reaching measures to accelerate Europe's transition to a competitive low-carbon economy by improving the regulatory and business environment and boosting investment in clean-energy research and innovation (R&I).
The Communication on Accelerating the Clean-Energy Innovation is a key component of a bigger package of initiatives adopted by the Commission for accelerating the completion of the Energy Union. Research and innovation are one of the pillars of the Energy Union. The strategy recognises that meeting the EU’s objectives for the clean-energy transition requires mobilisation at all levels: the private sector, national and regional authorities as well as universities and the research community. The growing role of cities and of individual choices by consumers is also highlighted.
Key R&I actions are proposed in four areas, selected for their potential to fast-track the development and market-introduction of breakthrough technologies: decarbonising Europe's building stock, strengthening the EU's leadership in renewable energy (RES), integrated and affordable energy storage solutions, and electro-mobility. Over €2 billion will be earmarked in support of these priorities during the last three years of Horizon 2020, the EU's R&I funding programme until 2020. Additional financing will be available through the European Innovation Council and by deepening synergies with the European Structural and Investment Funds.
A new €5 to €10 million flagship Energy Innovation Inducement Prize will be launched to reward breakthrough solutions to technological challenges in the four key areas. This new prize will build on the experience of current Horizon prizes.
The Commission's “Clean Energy for All Europeans” proposals are designed to show that the clean energy transition is the growth sector of the future. The measures cover energy efficiency, renewable energy, the design of the electricity market, security of electricity supply and governance rules for the Energy Union. In addition the Commission proposes a new way forward for Ecodesign as well as a strategy for connected and automated mobility.
The Commission will now work with the Member States, industry and the research community to help push breakthrough technologies and boost regional and international cooperation as well as Europe's share in world markets.
More information: http://ec.europa.eu/priorities/priorities/energy-union-and-climate/proposals-clean-energy-all-europeans_en