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Smart strategies for the transition in coal intensive regions

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - TRACER (Smart strategies for the transition in coal intensive regions)

Reporting period: 2019-04-01 to 2020-09-30

The EU has set itself a long-term goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80-95% compared to 1990 levels by 2050. In view of these objectives, the Member States are in a disadvantageous position due to the current state of the technologies used and the available local energy resources. These specificities must be taken into account when planning and implementing the national and/or regional energy strategies. Currently, 41 regions in 12 EU Member States are actively mining coal. This provides direct employment to about 185,000 people across the EU, with additional indirect jobs relying on coal production. However, the EU's decision to move to emission-free technology is not subject to discussion and it is therefore necessary, taking into account the difficulties of these regions, to anticipate and propose the energy policy that is in line with the tasks. These regions need an effective roadmap to make the necessary transition to a more diversified economic base and a more sustainable energy system, while safeguarding the social cohesion for communities and regions dependent on coal production.
The overall objective of the TRACER project (H2020; Contract No. 836819; www.tracer-h2020.eu) is to support a number of coal-intensive regions around Europe to design (or re-design) their Research and Innovation (R&I) strategies in order to facilitate their transition towards a sustainable energy system. Nine (9) European regions are involved in this procedure, 6 of them in EU Members States (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Poland, Romania), and 3 in countries outside the EU (UK, Serbia, Ukraine). Policy makers in these regions – the so called ‘TRACER target regions’ - will be assisted to develop, implement and review their R&I strategies by providing information, developing methodologies, expertise and advice. The main outcomes of the TRACER project, i.e. a set of blueprints and tools for Member States, Associated Countries and regions, will assist the target regions to identify short- and medium-term solutions to help their transition to a more future-proof business model. The TRACER project will lead to new and deepened cooperation in R&I between coal intensive regions that will facilitate their transition to a more sustainable energy system.
The TRACER project is implemented from 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2022 (36 months). In the Interim Period, after 18 months of implementation, the following work has been performed and the following results have been achieved:
- Best practice factsheets on technologies, industrial roadmaps and transition strategies wereelaborated (12 factsheets)
- Best practice report on smart specialisation strategies and SET plan implementation actions was elaborated
- Best practice report on financing was elaborated
- Best practice report on labour markets, social issues and tourism was elaborated (report and 11 factsheets)
- Best practice report on environmental protection and post-mining land reclamation was elaborated
- Web-based platform for the presentation of best practice examples was created
- Report on outcomes and lessons learnt from the best practice examples was elaborated
- Report on the current role of coal mining and related policies in the TRACER target regions was elaborated
- Technical concepts for the transition of the energy system into a smart, sustainable and renewable energy system in the TRACER target regions wereelaborated
- Report on the environmental impacts and sustainable reclamation solutions in the TRACER target regions was elaborated
- Report on the social challenges and re-skilling needs of the workforce solutions in the TRACER target regions was elaborated
- Guideline on available European funds and programmes for low carbon energy projects in coal intensive regions was elaborated
- Plan for the entrepreneurial discovery process in the target regions was elaborated
- A set of dissemination materials was prepared in the early beginning of the project
- Successful cooperation with the EU Coal Regions in Transition Platform is ongoing
- Two study tours were implemented for project partners and stakeholders to best practice regions (Wales, UK and Lusatia, Germany). In total app. 80 participants attended two study tours.
- Many dissemination activities were made in order to raise awareness among the different stakeholders and to promote the project
The expected potential impact categories of the TRACER project are:
- Lead to new and deepened cooperation in R&I between coal intensive regions that will facilitate their transition to a more sustainable energy system
- Contribute to reach the targets set in the SET-Plan (short to medium term, until 2030)
- Stimulate investment in the low-carbon energy sector (short to medium term, until 2030)
- Boost innovation-driven growth and industrial competitiveness, create opportunities for employment (long term, until 2050)
- Meet the COP21 targets and safeguard environmental protection (long term, until 2050)
Coal region, Research & Innovation, Passive House, Wales, UK (Study Tour)
Coal region, Floating houses, Tourism activities, Lusatia, Germany (Study Tour)
Coal region, IBA Terraces, Reclamation activities, Lusatia, Germany (Study Tour)
Coal region, Reclamation activities, Lusatia, Germany
Coal region, Research & Innovation, PV, Wales, UK (Study Tour)
Coal region, Wind Energy, Wales, UK
Coal region, North West Bohemia, Czech Republic
Coal region, Museum, Jiu Valley, Romania
Coal region, Tourism activities, Lustia, Germany