A new TACIS Energy Centre was opened in Ekaterinburg, Russia, on 26 April 1995. Through the new Energy Centre, TACIS aims to contribute to a more efficient use of energy in the region by providing better information and a focus for a range of activities to stimulate efficient energy production and use, and to effect a reduction in air- and water-borne pollution. Ekaterinburg has a population of 1.5 million, and 700 industrial plants of various sizes. The city's heat and power are supplied by five power stations. However, overall consumption of energy is between 30-40% higher than in comparable Western European cities. This is coupled with high levels of atmospheric pollution and contamination of the watercourse. The Centre will carry out a range of actions grouped into three tasks: information, training, and demonstration. It will disseminate information and increase awareness of the benefits of energy efficiency and environmental improvement and also provide demonstrations of efficient energy use for selected residential, public sector and industrial sites. "Energy managers" will be trained in Western management techniques to promote energy efficiency and monitor environment and control pollution. The Centre plans to operate a TACIS "energy bus" of Russian and Western European experts. This is something which is used to particular effect in the Moscow Energy Centre, as it provides mobility to measure energy use on site. An "energy hotline" will also be run to advise local businesses and institutions on specific energy-related questions, and to provide access to European manufacturers, their advice and equipment.