Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Energy efficient process industries: Furthering Europe’s ambitious environmental targets

Last updated on: 2016-06-15
Greater energy efficiency in Europe’s process industries will not only contribute to the EU’s long-term competitiveness but will also play a prominent role in Europe’s quest to meet its highly ambitious environmental objectives.
Energy efficient process industries: Furthering Europe’s ambitious environmental targets
Over 450 000 enterprises and around 6.8 million jobs are dependent on Europe’s process industries, which range from chemicals, engineering, minerals and ore, non-ferrous metals, steel and water. Consequently, the process industries, which generate more than EUR 1.6 billion in annual turnover and represent 20 % of the EU’s total industrial production, are absolutely vital to Europe’s economy and long-term industrial competitiveness.

However, these vital industries have had to face the key challenge of reducing their high dependency on resources. Although energy efficiency in industry across the EU has gradually improved (by an average of 1.8 % per year up until 2009), there is still much work that could and should be done to encourage the uptake of cleaner technologies, more efficient methods and better industrial procedures to reduce the industrial processing industries’ environmental impact.

Achieving a better environmental footprint for the process industries is now even more pressing due to the EU’s target to cut its emissions to at least 40 % of 1990 levels as a part of its comprehensive 2030 climate and energy framework. On Friday 22 April 2016, the EU also formally signed the Paris Agreement on Climate Change (COP21) that was agreed in December last year, formally committing the Union to fully embracing the transition to a low-carbon economy and society.

This CORDIS Results Pack showcases some of the EU-funded projects that have taken up the challenge of developing the novel methods and enabling technologies that will increase energy efficiency in industrial processes. Examples include the implementation of more sustainable and less-resource dependent manufacturing methods, the design and optimisation of new and accurate computational frameworks and software, and the cultivation of better international cooperation.
2016-06-13
New tools to help large plants achieve resource efficiencies
New resource efficiency indicators and software can be easily integrated into large processing plants in order to achieve optimal daily performance.
2016-06-13
Novel resource indicators and tools for competitive and sustainable continuous processing
The EU-funded TOP-REF project is developing an innovative new tool that will lead to the substantial improvement of resource efficiency in energy intensive industrial processes...
2016-06-13
New techniques aim to energise EU chemical industry
New energy sources and catalysts for achieving cost efficient, high yield chemical production could boost the competitiveness of European industry.
2016-06-13
Carbon dioxide could be turned into a commercially viable chemical
EU-funded scientists are working on how to create a useful chemical from CO2 in a sustainable way that could be scaled-up for energy efficient industrial use.
2016-06-13
Greening-up the chemical industry with energy efficient alternative fuels
EU scientists are using ultrasound, microwave and non-thermal plasma technologies to power chemical processes, replacing fossil fuels and achieving higher levels of energy efficiency.
2016-06-13
How regional cooperation can drive resource efficiency forward
Stronger regional cooperation has been established to boost energy and resource efficiency innovations in Europe’s chemical and processing industries.
2016-06-13
Speeding-up the production of green plastic
EU scientists are working on ways to speed-up the environmentally-friendly and energy efficient production of bio-based polymers so they can become commercially viable.
2016-06-13
Monitoring tools promise polymer processing efficiencies
EU-funded researchers have provided a boost for Europe’s vitally important chemicals sector by developing new monitoring tools to improve polymerisation reaction quality, along with...
2016-06-13
Cutting water use in the European chemical industry
EU scientists are creating novel systems and processes to cut water use and make the European chemical sector more competitive.
2016-06-13
An adaptive and integrated computational framework for intensified processes in the chemical and biochemical industries
The EU-funded OPTICO project has established an adaptive and integrated computational framework, consisting of multi-scale, multi-phase phenomena-based modelling technologies, and...