European Commission logo
italiano italiano
CORDIS - Risultati della ricerca dell’UE
Contenuto archiviato il 2024-05-28

RES Generation-From Infrastructure to Sustainable Energy and Reduction of CO2 Emissions

Final Report Summary - RESGEN (RES Generation-From Infrastructure to Sustainable Energy and Reduction of CO2 Emissions)

Executive Summary:
1. Executive summary

The RESGen project was carried out by nine partners coming from four regions Basque Country, Cornwall, Northern Hungary and Ostrobothnia. The objective of the project was to promote energy self-sufficiency and to support research driven clusters in the field of renewable energy. Among the partners there were complementarities both in the academic fields and in the renewable energy industry. The project structure went from benchmarking and analysing the situation in different regions to building up Road-maps and Joint action plans among the members. The process was complemented with mentoring between the regions and a dissemination of the results on different areas ranging from scientific political meetings to scientific conferences and stakeholder discussions. A central tool in the project was the triple-helix concept that was a tool for building up new knowledge thru reflection on the process and the results. The project plan was built up with components and methodologies designed to produce the Road-maps and the Joint Action Plan.
The project report is constructed describing the process as a whole, results achieved and the conclusions made. The second part is going more into detail and summarising the detailed reflection and findings of the different Tasks in the Work packages. The third part of the report describes the wider impact of the project on how the stakeholders view the effect of the project in the different regions. Finally the last section of the report lists the formal communication of the project where the project has been presented. It was however an experienced that the informal communication of the project to different stakeholders both national and international proved to be the communication that was most valuable.

Project Context and Objectives:
2. Summary description of project context and objective

The overall objective of RESGen was to create realistic grounds and practical tools for developing regional energy self sufficiency capacity by strengthening, utilising and optimising the regional research infrastructures and potential as well as supporting innovative regional research driven clusters across the EU. More specific S&T objectives were:

-To explore the state of development of research driven clusters and suggest improved ways for their management. RESGen will explore the state of development of research-driven clusters in the participant regions, and will foster when appropriate seedbeds to create new regional research driven clusters. RESGen will also suggest a dynamic and interactive approach in order to explore improved ways of managing regional research-driven clusters maximising the potential for the successful involvement of regional actors.

-To strengthen the research potential of the participant EU regions by encouraging and supporting regional RES research driven clusters. Regional research driven clusters will permit to associate, improve links and knowledge flows between different regional partners such as regional authorities, research entities and the local business community. This will foster wide cooperation (regional, inter-regional) between regional partners in areas of common interest and mutual learning.

-To prepare the grounds for sustainable energy management. Research infrastructure prepares the ground for sustainable energy management and towards the development of energy self sufficiency in regions (generation of energy by regional renewable energy sources). This infrastructure is like an umbrella creating the preconditions for practical application producing analyses, knowledge, expertise and experts, better understanding of the whole energy sector, and cohesion between different actors and stakeholders. This will enhance the regional science and technology based development, increasing the regional capacity of investing and conducting R&D activities and the regional economic development and competitiveness.

-To guide the participating regions and actors towards Sustainable Energy Development. RESGen will boost Sustainable Energy Concept and guide participants regions and actors towards energy self-sufficiency reaching future goals in sustainable energy and reduction in CO2-emissions. Analysing the RTD policies and the existing framework for knowledge triangles and research driven clusters in regions, as well as its impact on regional economic development, will be a key tool for integrate policy and energy agendas into research and economic development.

-To foster a future oriented strategy. The achievement of energy self sufficiency will be a long process, which touches the whole society. RESGen project aims at taking action in the participating regions towards sustainable energy management providing a road map and a vision 2010-2020.

-To promote synergies and learning processes across Europe through the development of Joint Action Plan. RESGen seeks to promote synergies between regional and research policies by producing regional research strategies linked to Renewable Energy Sources which regional authorities can integrate into their strategies. The participants will learn from the others and create synergies among them through the development of Joint Action Plan.

-To mentor partner regions. RESGen will mentor regions with a less developed research profile and experience regarding the Sustainable Energy Concept by more experienced partners through mutual exchange of experiences and best practices as well as through the development of Joint Action Plan.

-To suggest joint future actions. RESGen will suggest further actions for the partners involved in the partner regions and as joint partners in national or European initiatives. These will permit to use and further exploit the knowledge generated and the synergies created within RESGen through regional, national and Community programmes (RTD Framework Programme, the CIP and the Structural Funds) for research and economic development.

In order to achieve the objectives the project has adopted a work plan that has been divided into six work packages:

1) Project Management and Coordination is the first work package aiming at governing the work
2) The base-line analysis is carried out in the second work-package “Boosting the Regional Sustainable Energy Concept”.
3) “Road Map/Vision aims at establish regional energy research Roadmaps in the participating regions for achieving energy self-sufficiency.
4) The development of a Joint Action Plan strives at defining collaborative opportunities, critical links and synergies between sustainable energy research driven clusters.
5) Mentoring and learning is designed to foster transfer of know-how and learning between the regions.
6) Finally the last package Communication and Dissemination aims at communicating the findings of the project.

Project Results:
3. Foregrounds results

The RESGen project is not a research project in the pure sense that it would address research topics related to specific topics. The deliverables submitted forms the concrete results of the project. However in order for the results to have an impact the reflections done during the work and lessons learnt are of central importance . Due to this we will divide the project into two parts:

1)A description of the process that delivered the project
2)The context value of the deliverables and lessons learned

The scope of the project was to increase knowledge on how Sustainable Energy (SE) can be boosted at a regional level. The approach for boosting SE has been through the development of comprehensive regional strategies, which integrate all of the main regional stakeholders, industries, regional authorities, and R&D bodies into regional development programs. RESGen is an example of a project which aims to boost and find best practices for regionally comprehensive implementation of SE. It also represents the so-called triple helix approach, where the main regional actors are involved and ensure that the development is rooted inside the community and region itself.
3.1 The Process

The RESGen procedure was started by a detailed analysis of the current state of the play of regional SE, with two objectives: (1) to give regional decision-makers evidence for SE strategy planning, vision and roadmap; and (2) to allow the participating regions to learn about the capacities and capabilities of the other regions and form the Joint Action Plan (JAP). The analysis comprised mapping the regional SE characteristics into directories, and SE SWOT-analysis.

The starting point was the regional characteristics i.e. current energy mix, and future perspectives of SE. Special focus was given to the regional clusters with strong scientific and research base, high education and research institutions playing a key role, and business sector, research organisations and public bodies strongly interlinked. Focus of the analysis was to understand whether the regional SE RTD supply, demand, and supporting public policies are aligned and complementary. For obtaining four regional directories each region collected information in the following phases:

1)SE state of play: a) current energy overview b) situation and perspectives.
2)SE policies (national and regional).
3Directories of SE RTD demand and supply: basic information (employees, turnover, R&D expenditures, international presence, main fields of activities, funding sources, SE fields) of regional company base and research, 2008.
The data was further elaborated in regional SWOT analyses the information attained through questionnaires and workshops were organised into a SWOT matrix which enabled the definition of potential strategic steps:

In Finland and Hungary the matrix was used in the following way: Each S, W, O and T were collectively defined and then they were given numbers (S1, S2 ... T1, T2 etc.), and these numbers were placed into the SWOT-matrix, where every cell was a combination of S-O, S-T, W-O or W-T. The participants in the SWOT panel gave scores to each cell according to how important each person considered each combination (e.g. S1-O1, S1-O2 ... W1-T1, W1-T2 etc.). The importance was defined according to a scale of 0-5 (0= no relevance; 1= very little relevance .... 5= very important). The collective opinion was defined based on the sum of all scores, and those combinations that received the biggest scores were considered the most important ones. In Basque Country and Cornwall the procedure was simplified to meet better the requirements of their SE strategy process

3.1Regional Vision and Roadmap procedure

Based on the regional characteristics, the regions carried out the Vision and Roadmap procedure. First, the Vision 2020 was defined. Each region identified their SE priority areas and elaborated on these the Roadmaps presented in the appendix

A series of regional workshops were organised to guide the regions. The Delphi method was recommended but the regions were free to use any relevant method to attain a collectively defined Roadmap. Regional panels outlined the most likely future scenarios for the Vision 2020 and defined the priority themes and project ideas; they were further developed by emails and discussions. The project partners elaborated short descriptions of all project ideas within the agreed template. All materials were delivered to the participants of the panels. In the final workshop the results were discussed and, following the Delphi approach, the participants were given the opportunity to comment on all of the earlier results.

Following this, both the themes and the project ideas were given scores. Each participant received an email including the proposed themes and project ideas, instructions on how to give the scores and excel templates ready to be filled in. All participants were requested to return their answers by email. The summed scores were considered as the regional collective opinion and the regional priorities were defined according to these results. The projects were grouped into the priority areas. This organisation resulted in the “fishbone” structure, representing the Roadmap for each region. The essence of the fishbone structure as presented in Ostrobothnia is that there are four different themes for the strategic work. Under each theme different actions and priority projects are defined.

To show the prioritisation visually the most important themes were positioned starting from the right of each block, and the projects were located to start from the centre of the fishbone. There was a general agreement to update the Roadmaps annually in the future.

3.1.2 Joint Action Plan (JAP)

The importance of co-operation by pioneering partners became obvious, as the whole process towards SE is highly international. That’s why the four partner regions prepared the RESGen SE JAP, defining steps for future collaboration. At the core of the JAP is the desire to work across the triple helix to achieve SE outcomes. The JAP comprised a series of individual action plans to 2020 centred around six sustainable energy priority themes. Constructing of the JAP was an interative process where the Roadmaps of the different Regions were put into a matrix for finding common ground for cooperation.

3.1.3.The findings form four different regions

Ostrobothnia, Finland

The SWOT analysis

The Ostrobothnian SWOT list is shown in the appendix. The highest scores have been highlighted in red (darkest), and the least scored combinations are those with the lightest colouring. The dominating field is the “SO”-strategies reflecting optimism linked to the possibilities of the RES-industry. The main weakness is the risk that Ostrobothnia may lag behind and is not able to pursue the needed technical development. The new RES solutions may be impeded with strategic conservatism by today’s dominating actors who want to maintain their positions and protect their own business by introducing visible but mostly non-visible entry barriers. The poorly developed technical infrastructure and value chains are also seen as a weakness.

The main threat is the volatile situation in the international markets, and the key regional actors may easily locate their strategic functions outside of the region. Primarily the actors are from within Ostrobothnia but decisions made outside the region can have significant impacts. Moreover, the development of the RES-industry depends presently on political support. For instance legislation guarantees the ownership and monopolistic control of the delivery network to energy utilities, while feed-in tariffs might remedy the situation. However, legislation can change quickly. The weak political position of the region on the national political scene makes a threat to the continuation of the present favourable trend. This picture is reinforced in the “WT” quadrant: the score of the field was not high, reflecting optimism in Ostrobothnia.

The RESGen procedure in Ostrobothnia resulted in an outward oriented strategy. The vision consisted of a significant raise of SE self-sufficiency by regionally available RES, and well-being and development of the energy industry by improving its business prerequisites.

The energy sector in Ostrobothnia does also comprise large scale energy technology companies that operate on the global market. The business prerequisites for these were also analysed by the Ostrobotnian RSC and the major problems when developing the energy sector. Following the SWOT-analysis a workshop was organised for a more in-depth analysis.

The findings of the work-shop confirmed the SWOT-analysis and provided some more insights. The main problems facing the sector were seen as:

1.Access to skilled academic and non-academic labour-force
2.Lack of joint acting between universities, public sector and business-life
3.Unpredictable national decision making
4.Lack on continuation in the financing of the public R&D
5.Insufficient planning of transport infrastructure and industrial sites
These focal points were considered if not solved to have negative effects on the future development mostly stagnation of the hitherto favourable development or even a transfer of industrial activity elsewhere. The origin or the roots of these problems were perceived to be in:
1.Fragmented educational institutions and a low interest among students for studies in natural sciences. 2.There is not a clear common vision on how the RES sector should be developed
3.Poor national visibility the regions merits in the RES field is not seen nationally
4.Research tradition that focus on academic gaps and insufficient communication with the surrounding economy
5.Conflict goal between planning goals and industrial ambitions

The strategic work carried out resulted in draft visions and four main themes and a number of projects for the Roadmap.

•Production and
•Use of energy: Significant potential for SE self-sufficiency, 33 projects.
•Technology and export: The RES-industry the driving-force, 14 projects. Here the investments in new R&D infrastructure (laboratories) were considered especially important for the development and global competitiveness of the cluster.
•Education. Constant need for qualified workers, education vital,
14 projects.
•Image “The Region of New Energy” and its industry, 13 projects.

The project ideas were refined into short project descriptions. This material was delivered by email to the main stakeholders (the regional panel consisting of 70 key stakeholders) together with the draft visions. This group scored the projects and according to how each person considered the importance of each project. The results of the valuation procedure comprised the collective opinion of the panel. The priority projects receiving the highest scores were organised into a fishbone structure, which became the Roadmap for Ostrobothnia. The Roadmap is presented below.

The main visions agreed on for 2020 were to drastically increase the Energy cluster companies so that they are having a strong position both nationally and internationally. To be able to regionally support the development with a competitive energy education and research matched with a research infrastructure.

Basque Country, Spain

The energy sector is one of the cornerstones of Basque industry and thus its development is of high importance for the whole regional economy. The energy related RTD has a long trajectory in Basque Country and has reached global excellence in certain fields. RTD in energy directly employs around 2,000 people, being renewable energy and power transmission and distribution the areas where the effort is biggest. This is backed by an experienced and skilled scientific and technological network comprising the Tecnalia and IK4 corporations and other centres, universities and RTD units of business groups. The SWOT-analysis showed that the opportunities for the future development of the sector lie around new emerging technologies like wave energy, off-shore wind energy, photovoltaic, geothermal energy, and electric vehicles. Taking into account the regional business profile, the export of technological know-how in renewable energy was considered an opportunity for the future. The major threat for the positive development was the global economic downturn and lower investment levels in SE RTD.

In this framework has been designed the EnergiBasque RTD roadmap which seeks to consolidate the existing competitive network of science and technology companies and agents within the energy industry. This will contribute to the sustainability of the economy and develop as a source of wealth, employment and quality of life for the Basque Country. The strategy is oriented towards achieving an ambitious vision:

“To turn the Basque Country into an international knowledge pole and a reference for industrial development in the energy industry”.

The priority RTD areas of EnergiBasque were pre-selected based on their contribution to the energy strategy focus and then reflected against the criteria of existing and potential market appeal and capacities of the region. The results of the score are presented in the appendix to this report.

These areas were classified into three “orbits” , depending on the current size of the market, current technological positioning of Basque Country and the current R&D investment level (orbit size) of each technological area (The figur is presented in the appendix to this report). Each orbit was further detailed as a general objective of Energibasque

Following the RESGen procedure, the priority areas were refined into short project descriptions that included more concrete action lines and specific information about objectives and contents for each priority area. The strategic areas and the projects have been set along the roadmap based on the current regional capacities. Thus the priority areas of smart grids and wind energy for example are already important strategic areas in present whereas energy services or electrification of transport are currently at preliminary stage of development, but are expected to have higher importance in the future. The estimated budget of the Roadmap is 1316 M€ for the period of 2011-2015. Majority of the funds (73%) is expected to become from the business sector, followed by funds from regional administration (17%). The national administration and EU are estimated to cover the remaining 10%.

Cornwall, UK

The economic opportunities presented by the SE agenda have been recognised in Cornwall, with particular emphasis currently being placed on developing marine energy sector involving large infrastructure investment. The RESGen Project has been significant in supporting a coordinated approach between the business, research and public sectors who will need to work closely together to realise Cornwall’s RES potential.

The SWOT analysis identified a number of important factors related to Cornwall’s RES capabilities and capacity. Cornwall should be in a strong position as a result of large available RES which include wind, wave, geothermal and solar. The CUC provides a strong research focus coupled with significant investment coming into the region through European Convergence programmes. Cornwall also benefits from a strong industrial heritage, skilled local workforce and both public and political support for RES-generation. However, despite the obvious advantages over other UK regions, only a small percentage of Cornwall’s energy is currently produced by renewable sources.

Several key weaknesses were identified which have hindered the development of SE. These include the lack of market and demand for RES; limited grid capacity; and a lack of strategic leadership and joined up approach amongst the public sector. In addition the small size of businesses in Cornwall and low levels of manufacturing leads to a lack of capacity which in turn affects market leverage and investment opportunities.
There are a large number of future opportunities to expand RES innovation capacity in the region. Cornwall has a strong academic sector with world leading RES research and good links with local businesses. There are several large projects already in development including the Wave Hub, the proposed Environment and Sustainability Institute, the development of solar parks and the opportunities presented by St Austell Ecotown. There is potential for job creation and skills development, and the region could gain a first mover advantage allowing expertise to be sold both nationally and globally.

Effective expansion of SE in Cornwall will depend on whether threats can be mitigated. The most significant threats are economic uncertainty and changing priorities within the UK Government. Additional threats are posed through investment in unsuitable technologies, public opposition to RES developments (i.e. wind) and competition from large national and international companies. Cornwall could become a leader in RES-generation, however in order to achieve this Cornwall needs to capitalise heavily on the strengths and opportunities presented to the region whilst effectively mitigating weaknesses and threats. In preparing the roadmap, Cornwall Development Company worked with local stakeholders to define a SE vision for Cornwall, identify areas where Cornwall can make significant steps towards a low carbon economy and set out delivery options and actions to 2020 in order to achieve maximum benefit from these opportunities. At a strategic level, the roadmap aims to move the low carbon agenda forward and provide the evidence base for identifying future priorities and the necessary resources for continued and efficient delivery.

Priority areas for RTD have been identified to further Cornwall’s ambitions towards a low carbon economy. These include RES Technologies, Energy Infrastructure, Future Proofing and Energy & Resource Efficiency. The prioritisation process has involved extensive stakeholder engagement across the public, private and research sectors and has been closely aligned with the development of the Green Cornwall Strategy and Cornwall Council’s prioritisation process. The four priority themes are based around those activities which will support SE principles and facilitate economic development in Cornwall. The result of this process was a detailed overview of both existing and future priority projects as identified by stakeholders in Cornwall which shows that Cornwall will be relying on a holistic approach. Overall there are three common areas of activity that have been agreed by Cornwall’s triple helix as a focus for future development:

•Marine Energy

•Deep Geothermal

•Smart Grids

The Roadmap was developed in close alignment with Cornwall Council and supported their developing strategic thinking on the SE and low carbon agenda. This was seen necessary to ensure that the prioritised actions and themes identified as part of the Roadmap process have political support, as well as the support of representatives from across the wider public, private and research sectors in Cornwall. The Roadmap has already had some successes with some of the identified issues already being taken forward and resolved. For instance, Cornwall Council has now produced the Green Cornwall Strategy which provides clear objectives and targets for Cornwall. Cornwall Council has also outlined priority areas for investment which provides local businesses with confidence and direction in relation to SE developments. Through these activities Cornwall is now in a clearer position to drive the low carbon agenda forward, however continued collaboration between the public, private and research sectors will be essential to secure the ongoing development and realisation of the various projects identified.

Northern Hungary

In Northern Hungary the starting point was the complex system of global sustainability challenges, which was applied at regional level. This model of sustainable region was tested by the selected actors (forming the RESGen Regional Strategic Committee; RSC) in the regional economy of Northern Hungary The RSC had an open structure of geographical, sector-wise and functional representation of the regional stakeholders. The RSC was in continuous contact with the stakeholders.

Based on these results the present situation and the future potential of the energy sector and RES related innovation capacity in Northern Hungary were defined

The RSC outlined the regional RES-strategy for Northern Hungary with the most important actions as follows:

1.Starting integrated local systems based on the bio-energy potential and pilot systems
2.Introducing zero-emission technologies into exploitation of coal reserves and subsidising the co-firing of biomass with coal
3.Serving the increasing innovation and education needs by using the regional bio energy knowledge centre and involving solar energy
4.Intensive dissemination of successful RES-projects to exchange the low affinity to innovation and RES-investment, and to exchange the culture and attitude of energy consuming and to establish the social basics of SE management
5. Providing knowledge services for RES-projects outside the region based on developing regional RES-innovation capacity especially in bio energy and distributed energy systems
6.Starting RUE programs using the knowledge services of regional innovation centres
7. Starting consulting programs aiming at involving the public sector (local governments, hospitals, schools, etc.) in SE management
8.Elaborating innovative solutions for the private, public and NGO-sectors to help them in starting successful RES-projects

3.1.5 The Joint Action Plans (JAP)

The RESGen JAP was developed around seven priority themes. The process of prioritisation was both interactive and collaborative. The final list includes both technological and policy development oriented areas. The individual action plans for each priority theme were drafted by a working group involving experts from across the triple-helix in each region.

The JAP will continue as a legacy of the project, and the partners are committed to deliver the individual action plans by 2020. The commitment has already seen some early results (e.g. new project proposals, business collaboration initiatives and SE policy exchange.

3.1.6 Lessons learnt

Introduction of the RESGen procedure has been challenging for a number of reasons. It is a new methodology in a sector quite unknown for the stakeholders. The method was applied differently in each region. This demonstrates flexibility of the method and various needs of the regions. The main observation was that the procedure worked well, the regional process was easy to structure and the participants easily understood it. It proved visual, easy to use, in many points quantitative, well structured, and easy to update, according to the principle of continuous improvement. It was important that there was a responsible body to coordinate the procedure. The responsibility was successfully transferred to the local actors after the project. The other observations were as follows

Commitment of the regional stakeholders is necessary for the successful implementation of SE. Municipalities, energy companies, other industries and citizens are the main groups without whose acceptance the implementation is impossible. Regional characteristics the RES potentials were high, supporting earlier observations from Europe and globally. Understanding of the economic potential varied hugely at the regional level. A number of unknown facts, totally new for the stakeholders and especially municipalities, were revealed.

The SWOT procedure proved difficult in some cases, despite detailed instructions, probably because the templates were not visual enough. In most cases, where the valuation was prepared by workshops, the results were good. This implies that the presentation image should be improved. However, the procedure itself gave a lot of information, including new aspects that were not predicted and which proved valuable. The Fishbone structure was found easy to use and understand, both for the project organisation and for the participants. The decision making process seemed to work well.

The RESGen procedure identified a number of barriers for developing SE. Uncertainty of the future development of the energy sector was identified as one of the major threats. Specific policy support remains a precondition for mitigating the uncertainty. It will be important to improve the technologies and bring RES supply and demand to a level of maturity at which the sector can compete in real-time markets. Sustainable business cannot, however, be developed based merely on subsidies it must be profitable in the long run. The critical phase will be the establishment of larger scale systems, and there the public support is necessary. It is important to remember that most of the prevailing energy infrastructures have been created by public support.

Stability of the policies and regulatory framework are vital for SE industries, including public RTD support and wider policy context. The continuity of public procurement, investment support, feed-in tariffs, tax advantages, public awareness campaigns and other instruments are important for taking full advantage of the investments and technological progress already made. The continuity is even more vital at the time austerity and scarce funding opportunities. Thus there is a call for sustainable policies and regulation framework – general “rules of the game” are vital for SE. Technical advancements are crucial for the SE industry. The rapid progress during recent years in some fields of renewable energy (photovoltaic, wind) has already resulted dramatically reduced costs. Despite the progress, RES has a long way to its full potential. This is why continuity of public RTD-funding is seen as a crucial factor for the development of the industry. The RESGen procedure pointed to the importance to continue to identify the technical bottlenecks and existing potentials.

The RESGen regions identified lack of qualified workers as an important threat. Lack of engineers specialising on RES technologies is a real barrier of growth of local enterprises. Adequate support mechanisms to establish and develop university or college programs training young professionals as well as life-long-learning for senior experts would help to overcome the barrier. This would also address the regional development objectives by attracting talents in the regions already in the phase of studies, which well could fit in a RESGen roadmap.

The most difficult barriers to overcome are the “invisible” but existing institutional opposition to SE and difficulties of the diffusion of SE technologies. These dilemmas can only be solved during a long-term social process, which involves all key stakeholders. This requires, besides new technologies, new innovative institutional frames. Conscious development through comprehensive regional strategies and structured programmes will be important – the RESGen procedure is one attempt towards this kind of development.

Europe has the potential for 100% RES in their energy production), but the regions and countries are heterogeneous (authorities, jurisdiction, policies, resources, innovation ecosystem, climate etc.). The two premises, according to which (1) the transition is implemented at local level and (2) the European regions form a wide variety of differentiated potential, make it clear that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Rather, there should be specialised strategies combining the unique resources and capabilities of the regions. SE policies should thus focus on local and regional implementation. This has also been central in designing the RESGen procedure.

The European Commission has encouraged regions to “smart specialisation” challenging regions towards their strengths and relative competitive advantages. That will be an important context for the next European Cohesion Fund period 2014-2020. The RESGen procedure supported this development in the participating regions in setting a vision based on their strengths and making a detailed implementation plan to achieve it, and in taking advantage of the complementarities between the regions. The RESGen Roadmaps set guidelines for regions with the presupposition of flexibility. The regions were encouraged to find their competitive advantages and build their strategies based on the strengths, visions and objectives for their future.

Communication between regional stakeholders facilitates and strengthens the development. Involvement of the relevant stakeholders in policy-making from the early planning phase onwards facilitates the commitment during the implementation. The RESGen Roadmap exercise was a good example of wide involvement of regional stakeholders and different perspectives. It also proved that this kind of procedure is possible, and the decision making process works well between these stakeholders. When regions are designing their policy instruments in this wider context, SE RTD and RESGen roadmaps could play a central role.

There are complementarities and synergies among the RESGen regions. The JAP gives guidelines for moving forward and turning the identified areas to benefits for the regions. The collaboration was already established during the project, and changing it to value is the goal of the JAP. Collaboration in RTD provides significant value added for all stakeholders, and for companies it is relevant for market access, complementary positions in global value chains, capacities etc. Large companies are active in international networks and have experience in international cooperation. For SMEs or start-ups, cooperation is equally vital, but there is more need for support. The barriers are often found in local level, and public awareness, attitudes and trust towards SE is crucial for successful implementation of SE policies. Awareness raising and closer involvement of people helps to increase the appreciation of SE, and to decrease the negative perception. Involvement of local stakeholders is in focus in the RESGen procedure.

Regional SE RTD-policies are subject to (1) several different horizontal policy areas and (2) coordination of different policy levels (local – European). The first refers to policy-mix and the latter to multi-level governance. Regional policy makers should assign a proper policy-mix to support SE by aligning energy, environmental and industrial policies. The regional SE policies are implemented in coordination with other levels of governance and often depend on objectives set elsewhere, i.e. national or European level. Thus efficient communication among the different policy-levels is necessary. The RESGen procedure provides structured approach for this.

3.1.7. Conclusions

The RESGen procedure for implementing SE regionally, and it was tested in 4 regions in Finland, Basque Country, Cornwall and Northern Hungary. The main conclusions are the following:

•The procedure worked well, with some needs to develop it user-friendlier. The method was applied differently in each region, demonstrating flexibility of the method.
•Public awareness, attitudes and trust towards SE, commitment of key stakeholders and functioning of the decision-making system are vital for successful implementation of SE.
• Regional stakeholders were motivated to develop their own strategy, aiming at regional self-sufficiency and SE supported by the RESGen procedure.
•The procedure can reveal positive facts that usually are not known or expected. It may also reveal the institutional opposition and negative attitudes against SE, thus making the barriers and bottlenecks visible. These combined with the new strategic tool enable realistic development and control of the process.
• There is a call for “rules of the game”, as to decrease the uncertainty of the business environment for SE. Conscious development through comprehensive regional strategies and structured programmes will be important – the RESGen procedure is an attempt towards SE development integrating local and regional implementation, national and international policies, even smart specialisation and general progress.

Potentials, capabilities, willingness, barriers, and opposition towards SE were in common, but the details in circumstances, policies and habits were different for all regions. The RESGen procedure provided a systematic and formalised tool enabling unified development for all regions. The experiences suggest that the RESGen procedure also provides structured and strategic approach for the anticipated shift towards SE even for a more widespread use. The existence of this kind of tools may also encourage regional programmes and thus promote the development and implementation of Sustainable Energy.
a. On the detailed results of the deliverables
We will in the below section present the findings and selected experiences of the working packages and on different Tasks. This in order to present the experiences producing the deliverables and to document the lessons learnt.

Discussion of the main results (points) and impacts of WP 1:

•The governance of the project thru PSC meetings had worked well but that the RSC meetings had been interpreted very differently in the regions.

• Trust among the partners important and the result also benefitted from that the partners were knowledgeable and well networked in their communities. Developing the regional “triple-helix” cooperation still requires efforts particularly ensuring quality participation of the business community seem cumbersome.

•The triple-helix discussion needs commitment and capacity. On the commitment side the part of the problem is the “ownership” of the discussions or as sometimes jestingly expressed “it is nobody’s baby”.
•To fruitfully pursue the triple-helix approach requires that a development model is adopted including a problem setting. Moreover that the participants possess the capacity to develop a dialogue based on the model.

WP2 - Boosting the Regional Sustainable Energy Concepts

The role of WP2 was to understand the current state of play regarding sustainable energy in participating regions and accordingly support regions towards improved regional energy self-sufficiency. The results of the WP2 offered an important starting point for inter-regional cooperation. The work accomplished in WP2 served as an important basis for regional roadmaps (WP3) and ultimately gave ground to the Joint Action Plan (WP4). The improved understanding of regional sustainable energy situation was also important for identifying mentoring needs and offer (WP5).

Output of the Task 2.1: Identification of regional RTD Sustainable energy offer and demand related policies

• As sustainable energy is fairly new concept and in order to ensure common understanding of the concept, Task 2.1 begun with a definition of sustainable energy concept that consists of two main categories: Renewable energy sources and Rational use of energy. Under these main categories there are a variety of technologies to produce, distribute, and storage energy.
• A mapping template with guidelines for each region to develop directories of RTD supply, demand and related policies
• Each RESGen region collected information regarding their region following a template directory and instructions. The directory was divided into four parts:
1)Sustainable Energy – Regional State of Play Containing an overview of current regional energy production and demand; and a description of sustainable energy situations and perspectives.
2) Overview of sustainable energy policies Including identification and short description of national and regional sustainable energy policies with an especial focus on R&D policies.
3) Directory of RTD demand Directory with basic information (number of employees, turnover, R&D expenditures, international presence and main fields of activities) of regional company base in sustainable energy sector in year 2008.
4) Directory of RTD supply Directory with basic information (number of employees, turnover, funding sources, and main fields of activities) of regional research in sustainable energy sector in year 2008.

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 2.1:

The results of this task gave the regional RTD policy decision makers initial evidence on sustainable energy RTD capacities and needs in order to identify the needs for future policy development.
• The mapping of regional capacities in sustainable energy also fostered the understanding of regional actors on sustainable energy concept.
• The results of this task served also as an important starting base for knowledge- sharing and cooperation possibilities between the RESGen regions between the regions
• The deliverable 2.1 served as an input for Tasks 2.2 (Regional SWOT analysis) and 2.3 (Benchmarking between the regions). The information gathered in this task was also very valuable input for WP3 Roadmap, and WP4 Joint Action Plan.

Task 2.2: Regional SWOT analyses

Objective of the Task 2.2:

• The objective of the SWOT-analysis was to identify strengths and weaknesses as well as threats and opportunities of the different RTD policies and policy goals in each region.
Output of the Task 2.2:

• Development of dual SWOT method encompassing the dimensions of energy and innovation. Within this model the present strengths and weaknesses (S and W) are linked with the region’s internal competitive advantages, whilst future opportunities and threats (O and T) come from outside. The information attained through questionnaires and workshops (or both) were structured and organised into a SWOT matrix, which enabled the definition of potential strategic steps in each region.
• Two SWOT-analysis carried out in each RESGen regions: (1) regional RES innovation capacity and (2) regional energy capacity

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 2.2:

• Each region followed a slightly different approach when implementing the regional SWOT-analysis. The Regional Steering Committees were involved in the process and ensured the usefulness of the SWOT analysis for each region in question.

• The energy SWOT revealed the different potential, experience and integration phase of renewable energy sources among the RESGen regions.

• The innovation SWOT showed the differences in the level of development of the regional innovation system (level of integration of the actors, quality of scientific research, etc.)

• The results of the SWOT analysis served also in identifying different sustainable energy profiles among the regions:

– The SWOT analysis revealed how all the regions may not have the sufficient capacities of renewable energy generation and their areas of strength may be found from RTD capabilities.
– Similarly, some regions may have very generous capacities for renewable energy generation but may lack sufficient governance or innovation capabilities to deploy them in most efficient way.

• The SWOT analysis had its main purpose to serve as an internal strategy development tool and thus the results of the analysis served as a direct input in drafting the regional RTD-Roadmaps (WP3); but also in identifying of common interest areas between the regions (work towards WP4 JAP) and areas where one region may benefit from experience of others (work towards WP5 mentoring).

Task 2.3: Towards the best performing sustainable energy region

Objective of the Task 2.3:

• The RESGen benchmarking exercise aimed to measure sustainable energy potentiality of RESGen regions. The objective was to distinguish and take into account the different dimensions involved to sustainable energy potential including: current energy use, renewable energy potential, governance capacity, future demand conditions for energy, and research and development capacity in order to have a comprehensive view on sustainable energy potential.
The main results of the Task 2.3.:

• Development of benchmarking method for sustainable energy potential based on composite indicators
• Collection of a wide set of data of the current energy use, renewable energy potential, governance capacity, future demand conditions for energy, and research and development capacity in RESGen regions and EU-27 countries
• One benchmarking analysis that revealed the different development patterns of RESGen regions:
– All the RESGen regions have natural resources for renewable energy. It seems that Ostrobothnia has the most potential for wind energy, whereas Basque Country and Northern Hungary show relatively higher levels of solar energy potential. Northern Hungary has a large potential for biomass as it possess the most arable and forest land areas of the RESGen regions. Cornwall has higher potential for onshore wind energy than for example Basque Country, and although proper indicators were not available at regional level, it is very likely that the offshore wind energy potential is the highest in Cornwall as UK has the highest offshore wind energy potential in Europe. Similarly, especially Cornwall but also Basque Country is showing high potential for ocean energy, although exact measures were not found.
– When viewing the policy objectives and their efficiency, the results are very two-fold. In renewable energy context Ostrobothnia (with objective of 100% by 2040) is a clear benchmark in Europe but at the same time national (/regional) GHG-objectives of Finland are very modest (0%). Cornwall on the other hand, shows very ambitious objectives in GHG emission cutting (30%) but is more moderate in regards of objectives set for renewable energy (20%). Basque Country and Hungary have set more modest objectives on both GHG emissions and renewables, but are on the other hand showing good progress in achieving these objectives.
– In regards of energy demand context, Basque Country is the most dependent on energy imports, where as other RESGen regions have much higher shares of primary energy production. The energy prices, both for domestic and industrial customers, are higher than European average in Hungary and Spain whereas UK and Finland have energy prices lower than European average. Basque Country, Ostrobothnia and Northern Hungary show similar patterns of being highly dependent on energy intensive industries. Heating demand is obviously much higher in Ostrobothnia due its location, whereas the rest of RESGen regions have much lower levels of heating demand.
– The largest difference within the RESGen regions was identified in research and innovation capacities. With the chosen indicators the difference between best (Ostrobothnia) and worst (Northern Hungary) performing RESGen region manifested a relatively large gap.

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 2.3:

• Task 2.3 provided information on regional sustainable energy situation in order to better plan future actions within regions (WP3 Roadmap) and between regions (WP4 Joint Action Plan) as well as to set grounds for mentoring activities (WP5).

• The previous tasks of WP2, namely Task 2.1 Regional sustainable energy offer, demand and related policies and Task 2.2 Regional SWOT, were more focused on individual regions. This Task opened up the perspective in two important ways: 1) it shifted from internal analysis towards comparison of the regions and 2) it opened-up the perspective from four RESGen regions to whole European Union.
• The results of the benchmarking gave the RESGen regions opportunities
(1) to find peers to further boost the sustainable energy development;
(2) to find sustainable energy profiles elsewhere that may complement their own profile; and
(3) to have systematically collected data set of sustainable energy indicators for future use.
Task 2.4: Thematic groups for knowledge transfer

Objective of the Task 2.4:

• The main objective of this task was to organize regional workshops in order to raise the awareness of the sustainable energy concept in RESGen regions, foster the cooperation among the regional actors and disseminate and discuss the RESGen findings with the wider regional audience.
Output of the Task 2.4:

• Development of the concept and guidelines for the regional workshops
Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 2.4:

• As a result of this task, RESGen project reached wider regional audience and the RESGen results were contrasted with larger groups of stakeholders
• More concretely the workshops brought together in a common forum: technology research institutions, universities, public administration and private companies and offered a forum for discussions about the RTD activities in the field of sustainable energy, assessment of the current situation, and seeking ways to boost the capabilities of the region in the energy related R&D.
• Increased common understanding of the regional sustainable energy RTD development and stronger regional sustainable energy triple helix

Task 2.5 Manual for strengthening regional sustainable energy generation

Objective of the Task 2.5:

• The objective of this task was to provide a practical manual comprising guideline for strengthening regional sustainable energy generation based on the experiences of RESGen regions.

• The aim was to disseminate the lessons learnt during the RESGen project to other regions aiming to foster sustainable energy RTD-development.
Output of the Task 2.5:

One manual of regional sustainable RTD management that: 1) described the RESGen regions and partners; 2) introduced the key concepts related to sustainable energy RTD; 3) outlined the RESGen path towards regional sustainable energy RTD-management with three key steps (STEP 1: State of the play – Where are we now?; STEP 2: Future – Where do we want to be and how do we get there?; STEP 3: Joint plans – How can we get there together?); and 4) summed the key messages consider to be useful for other regions.

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 2.5:

• The manual was drafted in very “easy-to-grasp” manner, however describing the essential of the RESGen process of regional sustainable energy management, with reference to obtain more information from the RESGen webpage

• The manual allowed the dissemination of the results of RESGen project to wider European audience

WP3 – Road Map/Vision 2010-2020

Objective of the Task 3.1-3.4

• Regional workshops for definition of future regional RTD priority areas (Task 3.1)
• Processing of workshop outputs into draft project descriptions (Task 3.2)
• Regional ranking (scoring) of the RTD projects (Task 3.3)
• Preparation of regional RTD Roadmaps for the period 2010-2020 (Task 3.4)

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Tasks 3.1. – 3.4: Regional workshops for preparing the RTD, scorebords and RTD Roadmaps

• Active involvement of key stakeholders is very important, if not crucial, for the relevance and impact of a Roadmap.
• In Ostrobothnia, it was surprisingly difficult to agree on common 2020 visions for the region, but the project resulted in a valuable consensus on the visions, priority areas and priority actions 2010 -2020.
• There were different ways of preparing the RTD Road Maps in the different regions. The work process was adapted to the regional conditions and a project like this cannot be implemented exactly similarly everywhere.
• The communication inside the Triple Helix rarely functions well. Therefore, there is a need to improve the communication – especially the communication with the business companies and industry. Here the project had a valuable positive impact in increasing the communication and interaction.
• The prepared Roadmaps are very valuable for the development of the clusters and regions, but, in a changing world, there is a need to establish a permanent structure for on-going communication within the Triple Helix and updating of the Roadmaps.

Objective of the Task 3.5:

• The objective of the Task 3.5 was to formulate the findings of RESGen project in a format of policy-recommendations. More precisely the objective was to provide conclusions and a set of RTD policy recommendations to support the regions, research-driven clusters, authorities and policy makers.

Output of the Task 3.5:

• A short overview to recent developments of European policy arena. As the thematic of RESGen projects touches upon the themes related to sustainable energy and especially on regional development and innovation planning, the contextual overview presents the European energy policy and the main characteristics of innovation policy, giving a focus on the aspects closely related to regional development.

• A snapshot on main results of RESGen project as the basis of which the policy recommendations are rooted. The main deliverables that are considered to have the strongest impetus on policy recommendations are shortly presented.

• A set of recommendations in sustainable energy RTD policy first at general level addressed to regional, national and European levels and then some recommendations targeted to RESGen regions

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 3.5:

• With the policy recommendations, RESGen project results were shifted to policy recommendations that enabled the participation on wider policy level discussion about the future needs on sustainable energy RTD.
• The recommendations targeted to RESGen regions offered a set of general level suggestions on how the sustainable energy RTD could be further supported in future.

WP4 - Development of Joint Action Plan

Task 4.1: Conceptual approach and the Methodology for the JAP

Objective of the Task 4.1:

• The main objective of this task was to identify a tentative list of joint collaborative opportunities. The audit on potential collaborative opportunities was done on the basis of the work done in WP2 complemented with a workshop that aimed to capture the regional needs and opportunities for joint learning.

Output of the Task 4.1:

• A model was produced and presented in D4.1 and was the base for the continued work in the sense that it provided the base for the continued work

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 4.1:

• Documenting and sharing experiences between partners is crucial to understand what collaborative opportunities exist between regions and where current interest lies in terms of developing a join approach
• The better the plan is less resources are lost when starting up new joint measures

Task 4.2: Definition of joint collaborative opportunities

Objective of the Task 4.2:

• The main objective of this task was to identify a tentative list of joint collaborative opportunities. The audit on potential collaborative opportunities was done on the basis of the work done in WP2 complemented with a workshop that aimed to capture the regional needs and opportunities for joint learning.
Output of the Task 4.2:

• Based on the methodology defined in Task 4.1 and previous work accomplished in WP2 and other Tasks (e.g. 3.3. Roadmaps; 5.3 Identification of mentoring opportunities) the first output of this task was an indicative list of joint collaborative opportunities.
• Mini-workshop organized together with Vaasa PSC-meeting 6th of May 2011 to discuss and select the final list of joint opportunities. As a result of scoring done during the workshop the final selection of areas was done.
• Final commonly agreed list of common interest areas to be developed further included the following themes: : Wind energy, Marine energy, Smart grids, Energy efficiency, Regional energy policy development, Energy technology education promotion, and Green public procurement
A formation of inter-regional JAP working groups and development of detailed code of conduct for JAP working groups to turn the common interest areas to a tentative Joint Action Plan (Task 4.4)

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 4.2:

• The identification of common interest areas was done in a truly interactive and collaborative manner and the guidelines for turning the common interest areas to tentative JAP were planned to support the collaborative spirit e.g. by forming inter-regional working groups
• The results of this task helped significantly the definition of tentative JAP
Objective of the Task 4.3:

• The main objective of study tours and workshops was to have an overview about specific areas of technological development and to set a common basis for the development of the Joint Action Plan, with the help of achieving a better cross-regional understanding of the local reality.

Output of the Task 4.3:

Altogether five Study Tours and two Workshops were organized mainly together with RESGen PSC-meetings:

-Study Tour No. 1. Visit to Switch premises, Vaasa (Finland), May 2009. Main topic: Frequency converter technology and its application to the wind sector
-Study Tour No. 2. RENEXPO Central European Exhibition, Budapest (Hungary), May 2010. Main topic: Renewable energy
-Study Tour No. 3. Visit of Basque Delegation to Cornwall (UK), Nov 2009. Main topic: Marine energy
-Study Tour No. 4. ABB, Vaasa (Finland), May 2011. Main theme: Automated electricity distribution
-Study Tour No. 5 Ingeteam, Bilbao (Spain), November 2011. Main theme: Medium voltage electricity networks
-Workshop No. 1. “How to strengthen Research Infrastructures in order to promote innovation and competitiveness in the field of Renewable Energy?”, Vaasa (Finland), May 2011-Workshop No. 2. “Smart Grids”, Bilbao (Spain), November

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 4.3
• The study tours and workshops were organized in areas of interests of RESGen regions. The visits to local companies and events gave the opportunities for regional actors to learn from each others experiences.
• The workshops held were important discussion forums for opinion exchange.
• The results of the Task 4.3 did not only serve for preparing the Joint Action Plan but they were also very important tools for building mutual trust between the RESGen regions.
Objective of the Task 4.4:

• Joint Action Plan (JAP) was one of the key results of RESGen project. The aim of this task was to formulate the tentative JAPs that led to the definition of the final JAP. The JAP formulated the identified joint collaborative opportunities towards implantable plan.

Output of the Task 4.4:

• Six inter-regional JAP working groups worked intensively together to define the background, objective, joint activities, and implementation and business plan for their area. The groups presented their results in Bilbao PSC meeting in November 2011. The tentative JAP themes were:
– Smart grids (leader region Basque Country)
– Regional sustainable energy management (leader region Northern Hungary)
– Wind energy (leader region Ostrobothnia)
– Energy efficiency (leader region Northern Hungary)
– Green public procurement (leader region Cornwall)
– Marine energy (leader region Basque Country)

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 4.4:

• The definition of the JAPs was a result of discussions, cooperation and hard work among the RESGen regions
• The tentative JAPs were prepared in very detailed manner and requested to plan in detail the joint activities including implementation and business plan. This is expected to provide very good basis for collaboration among RESGen regions during post-project period.
• The results of the tentative JAPs were serving as a direct input for the final JAP (Task 4.6)

WP5 - Mentoring and learning

The role of WP5 Mentoring and Learning was to foster mutual exchange of experiences and learning between the partner regions. Its expected output was the definition and implementation of some mentoring activities to foster mutual exchange of experiences and learning between the partner regions.

The objective of WP 5

• Identification of needs and opportunities for mentoring (D5.1) to foster knowledge, know-how and experiences transfer between the regions, in particular from regions with a well developed research driven cluster to those with a less developed research profile;
• Organisation of inter-regional mentoring events (D5.2) to improve networking between the regions concerned and identify opportunities for future collaboration;
• Provision of a mentoring plan (D5.3) to bring mentoring up to a higher level and to support JAP definition;
• Creation of a mutual learning forum (D5.4) to support learning processes amongst project partners during and beyond the project life time.

The WP focused on 100-200 regional key actors and their specific learning needs in the respective field. The work and knowledge share accomplished in WP5 contributed effectively to the regional roadmaps (WP3) and to the Joint Action Plan (WP4).

Major results of the work within WP5:

• Improved and more systemic understanding of know-how and experience of the participating regions in sustainable energy development and regional energy management
• potential areas of future (mainly bilateral) mentoring activities have been identified
• knowledge transfer in the field of marine energy, ESCO’s, energy clusters, biomass and waste utilization, smart grids
• new project developed on the basis of the mentoring activity in the field of smart grids and decentralized energy management.

The following chapters give more detailed overview of the progress of Task 5.4 – Mutual Learning Forum.

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 5.4:

• This mentoring and learning community contributes effectively to the competence and capacity development of regional participants, allowing them to foster innovation and sustainable energy technology, and develop their RTD policy, which in turn can lead to improved CO2 emission reduction plans.

• Furthermore, this virtual (mailing) forum play a key role for post-project media for organising activities and developing further projects with the participation of the representative organisations of the regions.

• Non-confidential materials of the project were to be put on the public RESGen website, while all restricted materials were circulated via email (when using MLP, email notifications should also have been applied).

• The opinion, that partners are willing to use only a limited number of tools in frame of an international cooperation project was supported by RESGen project. Furthermore, the simplest way of communication proved to be the most effective. As agreed, it is relevant for post-project communication among partners also.

The objective of WP 6 Dissemination was:

• To create awareness rising among regional stakeholders within and across the regions on Sustainable Energy
• To widely publicise the RESGen project and outputs in regional, cross regional and European events
This was carried out thru tasks 6.1 RESGen dissemination plan; 6.2 Establishing and maintain RESGen project website; 6.3 Production of project publicity materials

Discussion of the main results and impacts of Task 6.1 6.2 6.3:

• Conferences and network attendances are important forum for communicating the results of the project and focus should be put on the quality of the communication

• The RESGen website has been useful in presenting the project and the results even of the wiki space has been used less than anticipated

• Publicity material is important for the project but the bulk of the communication of the project will be that the results will play into different processes and strategies as described below

Potential Impact:
4. Wider impact of the project

This section presents the wider impact of the project as presented by the stakeholders in the different regions. The project has pursued a two-fold approach, the first objective of the project was to create the tools for increasing regional self-sufficiency but the project also had a second objective of supporting regional research driven clusters across the EU. The objectives did also represent the different interests of the partners providing both bottom-up and top-down views on how to increase the proportion of RES in the production and how to promote RUE. Due to this the wider impacts of the project also differs by region as described below
4.1 Impact of the RESGen project in Ostrobothnia
Within the framework of the RESGen project a first version of the Ostrobothnia Energy strategy was produced. Due to the heterogeneity of the cluster the process has advanced even if there remains much work. However building the document for the first time constitutes a progress in the building trust among different partners.
The project has also contributed to raise the level of the triple-helix dialogue as it has produced many baseline documents and contributed to that Ostrobothnia joined the platform on Smart Specialization. It has furthermore produced a set of wider applications were new partnerships has been established and existing one´s have been deepened.
The project has also for the Regional Council functioned as a “door-opener” where the results have played in to political processes within the cooperation framework of the Council like within the CPMR WGs for Research and Energy. In the Finnish politics the results will be relevant in the discussion on the next program period with national entities.
4.2 Impact of the RESGen project in Cornwall

The RESGen project has been delivered during a period of political, organisational and economic change in Cornwall and the wider UK. Local government structures were significantly altered when Cornwall Council was established on 1 April 2009 through the merging of Cornwall County Council and the six borough and district councils in Cornwall. The organisational changes were accompanied by political changes, with the election of 123 new councillors to the new Council and a shift in leadership to the Conservative group. At a national level, the May 2010 election represented a further major political change with the creation of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government. This led to the implementation of a number of structural changes in the UK, including the abolition of regional government agencies.

The evolving political landscape has presented some key challenges for the RESGen project in terms of engaging with the public sector. Key organisations, such as the Regional Development Agency, have been dissolved and new responsibilities transferred to either local or national bodies. Established contacts with stakeholders across triple helix organisations have frequently changed due to reorganisation and new relationships have needed to be built.

At the same time as presenting challenges however the project has provided a consistent driving force during this period of change. This has helped the Cornwall project team to influence and inform sustainable energy developments in the region through the various project work packages and the focus on stakeholder engagement.

The base lining activities undertaken within WP2 helped to establish new, and reinforce existing, contacts within triple helix organisations. The process enabled the project team to collate a thorough overview of the sustainable energy landscape in Cornwall. It highlighted also the need for a clearer overview of sustainable energy initiatives which led to the creation of an online database resource the ‘Cornwall Carbon Navigator’. This website is freely accessible to anyone that wants to find out what projects and programmes are underway in Cornwall. A key aim of creating this resource is to help support a more coordinated approach to the low carbon agenda in the region and to facilitate engagement and joint working across the triple helix.

The development of the Cornwall roadmap to 2020 presented a unique opportunity to further facilitate engagement across the triple helix and to influence future priorities. A large element of stakeholder engagement was successfully undertaken with the public, private and research sectors. Most significantly, the work involved in creating the roadmap has informed Cornwall Council’s Economic Development Service prioritisation of low carbon activities which is expected to underpin the delivery of European structural funding in Cornwall post 2013.

Joint working with the RESGen partners has provided an exciting opportunity for Cornwall to share experiences and learn from some regions that are largely more advanced in implementing sustainable energy developments. The technical expertise within the RESGen partnership has been a key incentive for engaging the triple helix partners from within Cornwall in the project, and a key legacy will be the various relationships that have been established between stakeholders across the regions (and beyond the partner organisations).

Study visits and thematic workshops undertaken within the project have enabled partners from Cornwall to gain a clear understanding of the experiences and capabilities from partner regions and to identify complementarities and opportunities for collaboration. Smart grids for example have been identified as a priority for Cornwall but there is limited existing skills and expertise in this area within the region. A key impact for Cornwall has therefore been to gather information and knowledge on smart grids from the Basque Country and Ostrobothnia and to establish links between researchers across the regions for future joint working. A study visit to the Isle of Wight enabled triple helix stakeholders to learn more about the UK context and opportunities for smart grids. RESGen has also supported the further enhancement of joint working between Cornwall and the Basque Country in the area of marine energy.

The joint working and knowledge transfer undertaken during RESGen informed the development of the Joint Action Plan (JAP) which represents a lasting legacy for all the project partners. Triple helix partners in Cornwall have already been involved in working towards some of the key actions identified in the JAP. This includes the development of two FP7 smart grid proposals ‘SIERRA’ (led by Cornwall Council) and ‘Custom Power’.

In summary, the delivery of the RESGen project in Cornwall has produced many constructive outcomes and has had an overall significant impact on the region’s sustainable energy landscape. The Cornwall project team are keen to ensure that the project has a lasting legacy through ongoing delivery of the JAP and will be actively maintaining the important relationships developed between triple helix partners both within Cornwall and the RESGen partner regions.
4.3 Impact of the RESGen project in Northern Hungary

In accordance with the Energy Efficiency (ESD) Directive, the National Energy Strategy (just approved by the Parliament) and the NEAP, Hungary will reduce its end energy use by 2016 to a total extent of 15,955 GWh/year (57.4 PJ/year). This objective corresponds to energy savings of 1,773 GWh (5.38 PJ) per annum (from 2008). In order to achieve the objectives, Hungary has identified sub-areas of intervention. Priority areas of RESGen project and the relevant JAPs are harmonized to these objectives due to the fact that North Hungary would like to contribute effectively to the aimed national targets both on policy and action level.

In frame of the RESGen work progress and partnership, NORRA Regional Innovation Agency was able to generate more triple-helix cooperation and stakeholder engagement in the field of regional energy management. As a result, the region identifed the environmental performance improvement and RES utilization goals integrated as key priorities in the Regional Innovation Strategy(2011-2015) having been just renewed. The Strategy highlights the role of environmental industry clusters and triple helix cooperations as instruments of performance upswing and generation of comparative advantages for the region.

Stakeholder involvement was an integral part of RESGen project implementation, so North Hungary called the Regional Environmental Strategy Working Group for life in 2009. The WG integrates regional bodies and authorities, research institutes, NGOs and the industry. The aim of setting up the WG was to have a continuous stakeholder dialogue in order to exchange knowledge and experiences related to environmental and energy efficiency programs and to contribute to the development of the region’s optimized strategy and action plan for energy management.

According to the WG proposal, these priorities were included in the regional strategy:

• education of stakeholders in order to generate behavioural change
• mobilisation of public bodies and authorities in order to eliminate barriers and support implementation with individual strategies and action plans
• reliable performance assessment at the level of regions
• energy efficient buildings and otpimization of energy end use at public bodies (sample projects and models to be developed at local governments and other public institutes)
• energy village initiative through LEADER communities
• optimization of waste management and utilization (different solutions for energy-purpose utilization)
• development of sustainable public transport in cities
• wider application of environmental management schemes (e.g.: EMAS) at SMEs
• dissemination of smart consumption patterns

As a conclusion of the RESGen regional dialogue, it was revealed that regional actors manage numerous successful domestic and international cooperation projects in the field related to the above detailed regional strategic objectives. Formerly, there hadn’t been any forum for the exchange of this knowledge or mutual learning.
Due to the fact, that there is no seperated regional environmental strategy for North Hungary, RESGen JAPs are gap-filling documents for the area. JAPs may lead to a more sustainable region – as far as energy management and the competitiveness of the energy industry is concerned.

NORRIA, as a regional body is committed to the stakeholder engagement and the continuous dialogue among the government, the industry and the research bodies.
By the execution of JAPs on regional level, consumers may benefit from having better information available to control their energy consumption, influence their energy bills and invest in energy efficient solutions.

The environment would benefit from reduced greenhouse gas emissions and less use of natural resources. Public bodies could also reduce their spending for energy consumption by keeping the identified high priorities and using more efficient buildings, products and services.

The region, as a whole would benefit from a more secure and efficient regional energy management and economic growth through the creation of new jobs, particularly in environmental industry, building, mechatronics, vehicle manufacturing and IT

4.4 Impact of the RESGen project in the Basque Country

The development of the EnergiBasque plan as a result of the RESGen project has helped to provide relevance to sustainable energy within the regional RTD policies, on one hand, and to reinforce the consideration of RTD within the energy policies, on the other hand. Actually, EnergiBasque, which was approved by the Basque Government in December 2011, is part of the regional energy strategy called 3E2020, which has the objectives of increasing energy efficiency in all sectors, increasing the use of RES forms, consolidation of energy infrastructure and promotion of the eight key RTD areas which form the basis of EnergiBasque. It has also provided input to the regional Science, Technology & Innovation Plan (PCTI 2015) in terms of delivering the key technological and business development areas of the energy sector.

The RESGen project has also given the opportunity to give a collaborative European dimension to the plan having available the reference of the other regions participating in the project.

EnergiBasque seeks to make use of the major energy and environmental challenges as an opportunity for growth in the regional business sectors through technological development, inter-business cooperation and identification of opportunities.

The plan constitutes a new and differentiated priority within the Energy Strategy in the region, contributing to shifting the social and economic model towards sustainable development. Key factors which determine the Energy Strategy are the need to minimise the environmental impact of energy generation and consumption, the need to assure supply and reduce energy dependency and the need to guarantee sustainable economic development. The importance and extent of these challenges calls for a technological revolution and low carbon technologies are a key element for this change. The Basque Country wants to contribute to the challenge drawing a roadmap that seeks to consolidate a competitive scientific and technologic network of companies and agents within the energy industry which will contribute to the sustainability of the economy an develop a source of wealth, employment and quality of life, turning the region into an international knowledge pole and a reference for industrial development in the energy industry.

The EnergiBasque roadmap has been developed through the collaboration of the regional Administration, the technology centres and the Energy Cluster association and in this way it has all the elements required to ensure that the initiatives and actions defined are oriented towards the achievement of these objectives.

The regional energy industry includes some companies that are competing globally in their respective fields, in areas such as smart grids, wind energy and solar thermoelectric; the lines of action in these areas are oriented towards providing support for these companies, seeking to ensure that their development centres remain located in the region and reinforcing their role as business-driving customers for local companies operating in their value chain. In new emerging technological areas such as power storage and wave energy, the effort must be oriented towards sectors where there is sufficient technological base skills promoting synergies with other business areas. A third line of action includes areas whose development can generate technological or market opportunities such as electrification of transport, energy services or non-conventional gas.

In the area of smart grids, there are technologies that require closer attention, such as power electronics, sensor systems and advanced conductors. It is therefore proposed to support a new centre named INGRID for new smart grid research that will be developed by Tecnalia, involving an investment of around €20 million and is due to come into operation in 2015. To show the potential of these technologies, the aim is to promote specific demonstration projects and pilot schemes using public-private collaboration arrangements that will contribute to reduce the risk involved in this investment until there is a suitable regulatory framework in place with necessary price signals. The objective is to develop a comprehensive offering of smart grid products (smart meters, concentrators, transformer centres, etc.) and introduce these solutions through active participation in demonstration projects. It is also necessary to strengthen the presence on standardisation bodies and forums related to smart grids, in order to obtain first-hand knowledge of their activities and orient local capacities accordingly.

In the area of wind energy, the defined objective is to support the development of state-of–the-art offer in segments of the value chain in which Basque companies already have a good position, related to wind turbine components and equipment, and wind farm systems and services, and promote adaptation of the current portfolio of products and services to larger wind turbines and the development of the offshore segment. This will be implemented through the actions: the promotion of knowledge generation in off-shore technologies, the development of strategic industrial research projects and supporting the internationalisation of supply.
In the area of solar thermoelectric power, where some Basque companies are already well placed technologically, the targets are to consolidate the position as a reference region with respect to this technology. Basic oriented research oriented towards thermal storage systems will be supported through the CIC energiGune Centre. Another element of interest is the development of central receiver technology. The integration of initiatives through the Energy Cluster Association will be particularly important for the development of a comprehensive technological offer in this area.
In power storage, the aim is to generate high-level scientific and technological capacities and knowledge that enable companies to incorporate these technologies into applications with large growth potential such as the integration of renewables, power grid management and transport electrification. In this area, CIC energiGune Centre aims to become a scientific infrastructure of international reference.
In wave energy, the aim is to consolidate a scientific and technological offering and a value chain with a supply of equipment, components and specific services for marine energy. The key element in this area will be the Biscay Marine Energy Platform, bimep, which will attract developers wishing to install and test their devices and components, providing the opportunity for establishing an associated research centre.
The development of a differential range of EV charging and service support infrastructures is also an initiative that will be promoted. The objective is to support companies in developing an offer for electrical vehicle equipment and services such as charging stations, and set up a demonstration charging infrastructure that will act as an international paradigm and serve as a reference for local companies offering their products and services on other markets.

5. Finally
RESGen did contribute to new thinking in the regions involved. First it showed that triple-helix beyond a nominal cooperation is difficult. For a thru dialogue a harder structuring of the triple-helix would be required in a sense that the discussion would be held out-going from a model for the regional development. Agreeing e.g. on what constitutes a road-map was difficult. Secondly there is a difficulty in triple-helix as it is “no one’s baby” in the sense that the partners do not have their incentives in the dialogue. This should be remedied for in the future in order for the dialogue to function as a tool of creating knowledge thru reflection.
Second the benchmarking leading to the road-maps provided a useful tool for the regions and it did also function as a mean to have a dialogue within different European organisations. Based on the work carried out in the project e.g. Ostrobothnia was able to contribute to the European debate and has lead into a very active discussion within the platform for Smart Specialisation. Three out of four of the partner regions participate in the platform.
Third the final result of the project the JAP has served to deepen the cooperation between the partners as the identification of different topics for the cooperation has served to foster additional projects taking new steps.

List of Websites: