According to Paola Mazzucchelli, the Secretary General of The Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres (EUREC), their organization is now intensely focused on the EU’s program known as “Horizon 2020” (also known as H2020). EUREC recently won funding from the EU for four major projects. (FYI: These projects are all listed within the EU’s special classification system as LC-SC3-CC-4-2018):
European Technology Platform on Renewable Heating and Cooling (also known as RHC-ETIP)
In this project, EUREC coordinates the Secretariat of the RHC-ETIP. This project follows on from the “call-for-tender” contract that is currently supporting the platform, which is also led by EUREC.
By way of background: The European Strategic Energy Technology (SET) Plan – proposed by the European Commission to accelerate the deployment of low-carbon energy technologies – recognises the essential role of renewable energy sources for heating and cooling. Specifically, heating and cooling are seen as integral to the EU’s strategy for improving the security of the energy supplies. SET is seeking to provide the EU with a competitive edge in heating and cooling – and in each of the related highly innovative industries. RHC-ETIP brings together stakeholders from the biomass, geothermal, solar thermal and heat pump sectors – including the related industries such as district heating and cooling, thermal energy storage, and hybrid systems – to define a common strategy for increasing the use of renewable energy technologies for heating and cooling. Building on the experience matured since 2005 within the European Solar Thermal Technology Platform (ESTTP), now incorporated in the RHC-Platform, five major European organisations – EUREC, Bioenergy Europe (formerly known as AEBIOM), EGEC, Solar Heat Europe (formerly known as ESTIF) and EHPA – are leading the process towards the definition of a joint Vision and Strategic Research Agenda for the renewable heating and cooling sector.
European Technology Platform in photovoltaics (also known as ETIP PV)
This project is the follow up to another H2020 contract that is currently supporting the platform. This is a project in which EUREC and WIP (an EUREC Member) are already partners. Based in Munich (Germany), WIP is a renewable energy consultancy with a long history, since 1968, of managing research and innovation projects and organizing conferences and events focused on renewables.
This project’s main deliverables are a “Technology Roadmap” and a “Research and Innovation Agenda”. An important side-benefit of this project is that it brings together the hydropower community, which at the time of the EU contract signing on this project had nobody dedicated to representing it to any of the key European institutions. EUREC and two EUREC members are partners of this project: WIP, and the Greek-based Centre of Renewable Energy Sources (also known as CRES).
EUREC members CIRCE and WIP participate in this project also coordinated by EUREC. This project brings together ETIPs from across the sustainable energy space, many of whom EUREC has collaborated with informally up till now. Among our tasks are to set up meetings with ministers around Europe on the benefits of energy R&I, to organise a conference on the EU’s new Invest EU financing instrument and to reflect on whether ETIPs should form ourselves into "European Partnerships” with control over the EU’s budget with the responsibilities that implies, or remain as ETIPs.
Ensuring that the EU creates the conditions that are conducive to innovation is a key aim of EUREC. EUREC brings together over 40 research-focused organisations, each one being renowned for their expertise in renewable energy. EUREC covers all types of renewable energy and also the associated technologies, such as storage and grids. The renewable energy Industry benefits from outstanding RD&I. But is also in constant need of highly-qualified professionals that are able to carry out complex projects and to bring technologies to market.
For these reasons, EUREC actively engages with the European Commission and the European Parliament on energy research policy, EUREC maintains a network of trusted and relevant actors. EUREC participates in public consultations, sits on committees that shape the EU’s R&D strategy, holds face-to-face meetings with key civil servants and key politicians. EUREC present its views in relevant conferences and workshops.